Artist in Residence

Villa Lofoten AIR invites artists, scientist, and artisans to stay in out historic buildings, to work, get inspired and reflect. In the rural surroundings of Kvalnes, they get to explore the tension between the permanent and the passing, between conversion and transgression. In their unique ways, the artists who visit Villa Lofoten express ideas about the present, the past and the possibilities for the future.


Villa Lofoten AIR wants to stimulate artistic production based upon resources and subject matter that is locally available, resulting in works that spark interest in local resource and environmental issues, through global perspective.

The program also wants to establish dialogues between visiting artists and the local community. During their stay, the artist’s participate in workshops for young people and children, and present their work to the public. We focus on inviting participants form different cultures, genres, nationalities, and beliefs, to build networks and relationships across borders, genders, and ages.


Our Artist-In-Residence program has operated since 2015.

A list of participants in this program is displayed below.

The artist program is supported by the Arts Council Norway and Nordland County Council.



Martin Hartgen, Norway



Martin Hartgen is a composer. He has given a number of live concerts at festivals, worked as a DJ, and published critically acclaimed music under the name Burning God Little. While staying at Villa Lofoten, Martin studied music theory and constructed new frameworks for his production. He describes his stay in this manner:

The nature and the remote location of Kvalnes has been instrumental. The absence of man-made cultural sounds that we find in more densely populated areas, makes room for the world's perpetual background noise - what we usually do not hear. Listening to something we usually filter out has been an enriching discovery I will take with me in my further work.


Burning God Little


Kari Steihaug, Norway

Textile artist


In her art, Kari Steihaug alters between adding and subtracting. Between what can be seen and what only exists as traces and memories. In her art, an awareness of both something warm and fragile, as well as something violent, is maintained. Clothes are pulled apart thread by thread, a dress slowly disappears and half-transformed garments are located somewhere between the tangible and the undefined, turning into something a little uncomfortable.


When in transit, something new is always created; the meeting point between people and places, nature and culture, a new way of observing is slowly becoming a part of me and my work, Kari writes about her stay in Villa Lofoten. A transfer sharpens the senses and presence. I prefer having some time in a place, time to find peace and rhythm.

Kari Steihaug


Nina Lykke, Norway

Fiction writer and graphic designer


Nina Lykke has published the short story collection Orgien, og andre fortellinger (2010), the novel Opplösstendenser (2013) and the novel Nei og atter nei (2016), which won Ungdommens Kritikerpris. In 2019, Nina received the Brage Prize for her latest novel Full Spredning.


Her life is largely revolving around writing, also when she is in Lofoten. She mostly writes about existential crises in the urban, Norwegian middle class. Therefore, it will be exciting to see if there are any traces of her writing stay in Lofoten in her next novel.


Her next book is expected in the autumn of 2022. In August 2020, author and journalist Sylvi Inez Liljegren from Tromsø interviewed Nina Lykke about her authorship. The interview took place on the quayside in Kleivan harbor at Kvalnes, to the delight of many.

Nina Lykke


Erik Dæhlin, Norway


In his work as a composer and artist, Erik Dæhlin has been particularly concerned with instrumental- and music theater; music that integrates different kinds of performative material, unfolding in and beyond the music and in context to the performance space. He creates hybrid works of art where the compositional and directorial work consists of putting a number of aural, visual and textual materials into play. In this way, his practice is part of a multidisciplinary tradition both by virtue of education and work. He has his education from the Conservatory of Music in Tromsø (percussion), the Norwegian Academy of Fine Arts in Oslo (sound art) and the Norwegian Academy of Music (composition).


During his first stay in Villa Lofoten, Dæhlin was researching sites, different materials and medias that could form the basis for possible further works related to Lofoten: Photography, sound recordings, text and theory. He explored actual locations such as Hovstranda, Rambergstranda, Vestersand, Unstad, Hauklandstranda, Vik and Eggum. In his imagination, he sought out Colombia University, the square facing Halfdan Svartes gate, places to disappear, Calvino's cabin, Čabovce, the Ligurian coast, the port of Beirut, Torshovdalen, Florence in 1425, Rathkes place, Jølsterelva, Norwegian Telegram Agency in Nedre Vollgate, the Y-block, Zapffe's cottage in Lyngen and Shiraz-Persepolis.

Hanne Friis, Norway
Visual artist

Hanne Friis studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Trondheim (1992-96). Over the years, her work with textiles as a malleable material has taken an ever-increasing crafts approach.


More recently, plant-dyed textiles have become a large part of her production. The process of plant dyeing is slow and time consuming. It involves physical work such as gathering, processing, washing and finishing, in addition to the dyeing itself. After the textiles have been dyed, Hanne shapes her works using needle and fishing thread. She uses a characteristic folding seam, where the fabric is compressed into a compact structure that changes the fabric's originally unstable shape. The works are given an organic expression with a reminder of nature or the body's inner patterns.

Along the ditches of Lofoten, Hanne has collected plants that are rich in tannins. In combination with iron water, they give a grayish color. A result of this process is the sculpture Topography III, which was shown for the first time in the exhibition Hidden Pattern at KRAFT in Bergen in the autumn of 2020.

Hanne Friis 

Camilla Barratt–Due, Norway - Germany
Composer, musician and performance artist

Camilla Barratt–Due is educated as an accordionist, composer and singer. During her residency she researches shipwrecks through a particular accident; the shipwreck of D/S Havskåren off the coast of Kvalnes in 1946. Camilla’s research will result in a performative installation premiere at Stamsund International Theatre Festival 2020. 

Camilla is also one of the teachers in the project Me, in the Middle of the Story with pupils from 9th grade at Bøstad secondary school. The pupils record sounds in the field with particular focus on changes in the soundscape around them. The recordings are used as material for compositions.

Camilla Barratt-Due

Olivier Touche, France
Sound designer

Olivier Touche is a sound designer who works with sound recording and sound design on various films. He works with bridges during his residency. For him, bridges can be seen as intersections between the contradictory energy forces between people’s demands (traffic, energy, water) and the inevitable limitations in nature (currents, cliffs, winds). Olivier’s project is to explore the soundscape and develop a sonic portrait of the place where the bridge is crossing the Gimsøy current in all kinds of weather conditions.

Oliver Touche

Pauline Grethen, France
Graphic designer

Pauline Grethen is a graphic designer and also works with set decoration on film productions. During her residency she works with graphic designer Ida Sæterdal with the design of the art book made by photographer Virginie Surdej and art historian Aaslaug Vaa.

Pauline is also working with the project Me, in the Middle of the Story together with pupils from 9th grade at Bøstad secondary school. A part of the project is to make a cookbook where the pupils collect recipes from their ancestors while tracing the recipes’ stories of origin. Together with chef Cecilie Steinkjer they make their own versions of the recipes and Pauline designs the cookbook in dialogue with the pupils.

Pauline Grethen

Vegard Lund Johannessen, Norway
Carpenter and glass blower

Vegard Lund Johannessen is a carpenter and glass blower. Together with Sigrid Høyforsslett Bjørbæk, he runs Bruket glass studio in Bodø. Vegard is reconstructing the western part of The Fisherman’s Cabin at Kleivan together with carpenter Daniel Mabin. They are also reconstructing and furnishing the interior of the whole building. 

Vegard Lund Johannessen

Margrete Bjone Engelien, Norway

Margrete Bjone Engelien is a newly educated architect from The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Architecture in Copenhagen. Through the slogan protection through use, she has contributed to the restoration and extension of the barn at the farm of Villa Lofoten. The barn will be reconstructed into a multi use house, with a sound studio, working stations, a meeting room, and a venue for different events that holds up to 30 people. The work is a collaboration between carpenter Daniel Mabin, engineer Jossi Pettersen, and owner Aaslaug Vaa in dialogue with Einar Engen and Gunhild Ryen in The Cultural Heritage Fund.

Daniel Mabin, Norway – Australia

Daniel Mabin is a carpenter educated in Australia. He is reconstructing the western part of The Fisherman’s Cabin at Kleivan together with carpenter Vegard Lund Johannessen. They are also reconstructing and furnishing the interior of the whole building.  Daniel is also participating in the project plan for the restoration, and the extension of the barn together with guest artist and architect Margrete Bjone Engelien.


Marit Grimstad Eggen, Norway 

Marit Grimstad Eggen is a dramaturge. She works with stage artist Eirik Fauske. They are developing the performance We are this eye. The work is a search for a larger we, and an investigation of various forms of audience fellowship. The performance is shown under the Lofoten International Theatre Festival as a pilot in 2018, and full performance in 2019.

Eirik Fauske, Norway  
Playwrighter and director

Eirik Fauske is a playwrighter and director. He works with the dramaturge Marit Grimstad Eggen. They are developing the performance We are this eye. The work is a search for a larger we, and an investigation of various forms of audience fellowship. The performance is shown under the Lofoten Theater Festival as a pilot in 2018, and full performance in 2019.


Eirik Fauske

Julie Skarland, Norway 
Fashion designer and textile artist

Julie Skarland is a fashion designer and textile artist. She has lived and worked in Paris for 20 years, and in New-Dehli for the past 11 years. During her stays in Villa Lofoten, Julie develops works within textile, film and fashion based on her sensual impressions and human encounters in Lofoten.


Julie Skarland


Annick Ligtermoet, Finland

Fine-art photographer

Annick Ligtermoet is a photographer. She explores and documents nature's own processes, moulds biomass into objects, and explores seaweed and kelp as artistic material.

Annick Ligtermoet

Gry Rask Sørensen, Norway
Visual artist

Gry Rask Sørensen is a visual artist. She explores how local plants and crops can be used as materials and dyes in textile installations.



Ingela Magner, Sweden

Author and director

Author and film director Ingela Magner’s work centers around Scandinavian stories for children about life during the High Middle Ages, based on historical materials and archaeological findings.


Ingela Magner

Camilla Figenschou, Norway 
Visual artist

Visual artist Camilla Figenschou works with photography and moving images. She strives for an attentive camera eye. In her residency project she rewrites actual local relationships to cinematic fictional fragments.

Camilla Figenschou

Hanna Ljungh, Sweden
Visual artist

Hanna Ljungh is a visual artist. For a long time, she has devoted herself to artistic studies of materials we refer to as stone, meadow, soil, land and mountains. During her residency, Ljungh works with a sensory cinematic approach as a method in a new 16 mm film.


Hanna Ljungh

Dan Isaac Wallin, Sweden

Through his distinctive poetic style, photographer Dan Isaac Wallin works actively with themes of proportions between humans and their surroundings. In his repeated investigations of the Lofoten landscape, he almost insists on capturing constancy and immutability. He works primarily with Polaroid and alternative photographic processes.


Dan Isaac Wallin

Acacia Johnson, USA

Fine-art photographer
Acacia Johnson is a fine-art photographer with a focus on the Polar Regions of the earth. She is utilizes the photographic image to investigate the relationships between humans and nature in the circumpolar Arctic.


Acacia Johnson


Tor Edvin Eliassen, Norway


Tor Edvin Eliassen is a student of film photography at the Film School in Lodz in Poland. He is also a photographer and assistant in several projects run by Villa Lofoten.

Tor Edvin Eliassen

Virginie Surdej, Belgium
Photographer and cinematographer

Virginie Surdej is a fine-art photographer and cinematographer. In her work, she explores the passage of time in the landscape, in architecture and in humans. Her viewers are invited to reflect upon the concepts of history, memory and reminiscence.

Virginie Surdej


Jørn Nyseth Ranum, Norway

Director and film photographer

Jørn Nyseth Ranum is a film director and photographer. Together with astrophysicist Jean Surdej, he conducts workshops in film and astrophysics with teenagers. The project results in the movie Children of Stars.

Jørn Nyseth Ranum


Frøya Thue, Norway


Frøya Thue is a service designer. She has developed Villa Lofoten's website while the restoration of the buildings has been going on.

Nanna Frank Møller, Denmark
Director, cinematographer and editor

Nanna Frank Møller is a film director, cinematographer and editor.
Her movies are characterized by the intimacy given the lives of her characters – and the depth of humanity the subjects are given room to express.


Nanna Frank Møller


Uffe Black Nielsen, Denmark

Uffe Black Nielsen is an architect. In collaboration with the owner,
he has documented and projected the restoration of the buildings worthy of conservation which Villa Lofoten owns in the harbour: The Fisherman’s Cabin, The Saltery, The Steamery and the quay.


Eystein Greibrokk, Norway

Traditional Artisan

Eystein Greibrokk is a traditional artisan. He restores the stove and brick pipe in The Steamery and leads the restoration and upgrading of the quay. Eystein is a specialist in clay and dry walling. During the work on the quay, he brings with him the bricklayer Anders Lyche Oppegaard, and Karl Kristiansen from Lofothau to operate the excavator.

Eystein Greibrokk


Torgeir Thorsen, Norway
Traditional Artisan and craftsman

Torgeir Thorsen is a traditional artisan and craftsman. His material is wood;

he restores buildings, boats and objects. Being from Vesterålen, Torgeir knows the local building tradition. The Steamery has been his restoration project. Based on the architect's drawings, and together with other artisans, he has led and carried out the reconstruction of a ruin to a habitable house that still stands on pillars in the sea.


Geir Losnegaard, Norway

Furniture carpenter

Geir Losnegaard is a goldsmith and furniture carpenter. He designs and builds place-built furniture’s on the 1st and 2nd floor of The Saltery.