The Falklands Project, Jasmijn Visser


In March 2013, Jasmijn Visser and photographer Peter Lipton undertook a research expedition to the Falkland Islands. There, they investigated how political world powers have shaped both the political and social landscape of this group of islands since they were first discovered. Their expedition resulted in The Falklands Project, comprising a website, a launch at TAAK and a conflict atlas. Jasmijn Visser reconstructs the Falklands conflict, drawing on writings, archive material, photos and drawings, shedding new light on a precarious history from a contemporary perspective.

Since their discovery by Dutch explorer Sebald de Weert in 1600, the Falkland Islands have been impacted by every major incident on the world stage. The Falkland Islands have been claimed by France, Spain, Argentina and the United Kingdom. In 1982, friction between the latter countries resulted in war. The sovereignty dispute continues to this day. Despite its peripheral location and size (all told, the Falklands is roughly equivalent in size to Flanders), global historic events have left visible and palpable traces in the landscape. Around 20,000 landmines laid during the 1982 war are now being systematically cleared by experts flown in from Zimbabwe. Still strewn with landmines, the beaches that were once popular holiday destinations are now the territory of penguins. Too light to detonate the mines, the birds can live there undisturbed.

Conflict atlas

On the basis of field work and archive research, Jasmijn Visser tracked down contingent cases and linked them to historical events, carefully documented by writings, archive material, drawings and photos. This opens up a new way of writing history, with which the nature of history itself becomes visible: a chaotic sea of circumstances that, through the endless variation of contexts, has become so overwhelming that it dwarfs the human scale.

The project website consists of a Wikipedia construction, retelling the history of the Falkland Islands by means of 28 cases, both global and local. The conflict atlas, designed by Metahaven and with cartography by Visser, will be released later in 2014.

TAAK and Land Art Contemporary are hosting a programme about The Falklands Project and to launch it's website on Thursday 13 February 2014. 

With guest speakers:

Tristan Mostert, historian and curator, provides a context for the Dutch expedition of 1600 when much of the world was uncharted territory, geese still grew on trees, and giants roamed Patagonia.

Jasmijn Visser gives a performative lecture, taking us on a voyage through the history of the Falkland Islands and the website.

Jolle Demmers is professor and founder of the Centre for Conflict Studies (CCS) at the University of Utrecht. She reflects on The Falklands Project and discusses related topics including land claims in situations of armed conflict.

Start: 19:30; location: TAAK, Frans de Wollantstraat 82; beer/ soda: € 2,00, wine € 2,50; spoken language: English; no need to register

About Jasmijn Visser
Jasmijn Visser (1983) has a deeply rooted fascination for the structural foundation our society is build on, through history and the present day. She explores this through the interface of drawing and design. Visser studied Visual Art & Design as well as Fine Art (2007) at the Art Academy Utrecht and took part in the Postgraduate program of De Ateliers Amsterdam (2011).

About Land Art Contemporary
Land Art Contemporary is a new initiative in Drenthe with a varied, international, multiyear programme dealing with (the contemporary aspects of) land artLand Art Contemporary focuses on presenting existing and new art projects and cultural heritage in the rural environment of Drenthe, by adding a series of new and modern elements. In 2011, the launch of Land Art Contemporary coincided with the 40th anniversary of the creation of the work of art Broken Circle/Spiral Hill, produced by the American artist Robert Smithson (1938-1973) in Emmen in 1971. This anniversary served as the starting point for a series of art assignments that  Land Art Contemporary developed advised by TAAK:  The Ultraperipheric.

During the trip, Jasmijn Visser kept on a blog on Read the weblog here (in Dutch)