Crisscrossing Realities: A Conversation with Libia Castro and Ólafur Ólafsson

conducted in April 2011 for Art Pulse, New York (summer issue 2011) 
The Spanish-Icelandic artist duo Libia Castro (born 1969 in Madrid) and Ólafur Ólafsson (born 1973 in Reykjavik) are representing Iceland at the 54th Venice Biennale 2011, which opened in June. We met the artists in the middle of the production of their new video and performance works for this occasion. The interview was conducted between Berlin, Germany, and Hafnarfjörour, Iceland, via Skype in April 2011.
Barbara J. Scheuermann: Before we start talking about your plans for the Icelandic pavilion at this year’s Venice Biennale, I first would like to ask you to give me a picture of where you are and what you are occupied with at the moment.
Libia Castro and Olafur Olafsson: For the last couple of months we have been in Iceland, on a residency at Hafnarborg Arts Center, which is based in the outskirts of Reykjavik. With them and RÚV-a national Icelandic TV channel-we produced the piece Constitution of the Republic of Iceland for the Biennale. From May on we are in Venice, where we will do the last part of the production of the work, Your Country Doesn’t Exist, and a new iteration of the project that has been developed since 2003. (...)
Photo credit: Video-still from Il Tuo Paese Non Esiste, 2011, exhibited at the Pavilion of Iceland at the 54th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale. Photo: Lilja Gunnarsdóttir

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