Performing Resistance is a research project by Annika Lundgren, carried out with support of the Valand Academy Research Board and in collaboration with the independent cultural platform Skogen.

The project concerns itself with the potential of strategies emanating from the field of art as tools for transformation, discussing the relationship between inside and outside the institution, between thinking and doing and between antagonism and cooperation.

Performing Resistance consists of three co-dependent parts: a series of seminars on resistance; the Archive for Resistance Strategies to collect knowledge and ideas; and the performing of the archive material through artwork, lectures, workshops and actions, all sited in Lundgren's artistic practice.

Current events

Upcoming in September

Tri-weekly study groups around the Archive for Resistance Strategies will be resumed.

Seminar on Performing Resistance at Valand Academy.


Performing Therapy

8 April 2016

The third seminar took place on April 8, where participants left Valand Academy by bus towards an undisclosed location. The formal part of the seminar ended with the arrival at Skogen, where the evening was continued with bar, mingling and the performance Än mindre Hamlet (Ego Boy Going Chronos) by Yak Kallop.

Performing Therapy aimed to bring about new reflections on the nature and potential of therapy as resistance, such as this has been touched upon by artists, philosophers and psychiatrists but methods have not yet been significantly developed.

Art and therapy are historically linked through the concept of art therapy, understood as a creative method of expression that has been used as a therapeutic technique taking the dual roles of diagnosis and cure. From this perspective art therapy is linked both to the genre Outsider Art and to the idea of the—frequently psychologically challenged—artist genius.

Contrary to this traditional function, however, therapy may be used to identify and analyze social and political hierarchies and power structures or as a method of de-programming us from the rhetorics of neo-liberalism, curing us from understanding ourselves as passive consumers, regaining our status as active citizens.

Keynotes were given by Nina Möntmann, Malin Arnell, Valentina Desideri and the seminar was moderated by Annika Lundgren.

Reading list

Valentina Desideri and Denise Ferreira Da Silva
A Conversation Between Valentina Desideri and Denise Ferreira Da Silva

Michael Guilfoyle
From Therapeutic Power to Resistance?

Lucy R. Lippard and John Chandler
The Dematerialization of Art

Eva Marxen
Therapeutic Thinking in Contemporary Art. Or Psychotherapy in the Arts.

Marcia Hill
Feminist Theory As Political Act

Franco Bifo Berardi
Political Theraphy

Julie Tilsen and Dave Nylund
Resisting normativity: Queer musings on politics, identity, and the performance of therapy

Ana Tiscorna
The War We Have Not Seen

Sara Vizcarrondo
The Art of ‘Killing’: How Much Truth Comes from the Lie that Tells the Truth?
Interview with Joshua Oppenheimer on The Art of Killing

Michael Zelenko
Talking to Joshua Oppenheimer about his devastating follow-up to The Act of Killing
Interview with Joshua Oppenheimer on The Art of Killing

Ryan LaMothe
Political Resistance as Cure

Resistance and the Institution

20 November 2015

The second seminar took place on November 20 where participants left Valand Academy by bus towards an undisclosed location. The formal part of the seminar ended with the arrival at Skogen, where the evening continued with bar, mingling and a performance by Yak Kallop.

Resistance and the Institution posed the question of what concrete strategies of resistance can be extracted from the academic institution and how its resources can contribute to counteracting contemporary neo-liberal agendas.

Razmig Keucheyan, professor in sociology at the University of Paris-Sorbonne, points out that the political and intellectual fields have grown more and more apart since the second part of the 20th century. Keucheyan also claims that new social movements such as Occupy and Indignados need mediating institutions—such as the universities—to help elaborate their ideas and to tackle the question of where to go next. To meet this demand we, who work within institutions, need to think of themselves as being in and not of the institution, to create platforms for organizing combined knowledge and to open the academy to new functions: social, solidary, and supportive. We need to locate the institution’s anti-capitalist potential and discuss the practicalities of how to put these intellectual and material resources, and use these in ways that support actions that have an actual political effect. The matter ultimately concerns not just the relationship between academicism (or art) and activism, but the very relationship between citizenship and activism.

Keynotes were given by Mikkel Bolt, Kuratorisk Aktion and Yak Kallop, and the seminar was moderated by Annika Lundgren.

Reading list

Erik Bryngelsson
From the critique of institutions to destitutive critique
Essay written for the seminar and based on the keynote by Yak Kallop

Irit Rogoff

Gilles Deleuze
Instincts and Institutions

Andrew Gavin Marshall
Against the Institution: A Warning for Occupy Wall Street

Boris Groys
On Art Activism

Jim Downs & Jennifer Manion
Taking Back the Academy

Razmig Keucheyan
How to Break the Stranglehold of Academics on Critical Thinking

Sandra Grey
In Search of an Activist Academic

David Darts
Visual Culture Jam: Art, Pedagogy and Creative Resistance

Andrew Gavin Marshall
Against the Institution — A Warning for Occupy Wall Street

Nationella sekretariatet för genusforskning
Aktivister kritiserar forskare för envägskommunikation

Brian Holmes
Liar’s Poker

On Art, Activism and Academism

29 May 2015

Performance by Psychic Warfare on the way to Skogen

Performance by Psychic Warfare on the way to Skogen

The first seminar within the artistic research project Performing Resistance departed from the question of how artistic work undertaken inside of the institution can be combined with political commitment The seminar was held at Valand Academy, with a performance by Psychic Warfare taking place during the procession to a concluding event at cultural platform Skogen.

Keynotes were given by Gregory Sholette, Andrea Phillips and Jess Baines. The seminar was moderated by Annika Lundgren.

Reading list

Annika Lundgren
An Interview with Gregory Sholette — On the Relationship Between Art, Activism and Academism
Interview in connection with the seminar

Gregory Sholette
Dark Matter: Art and Politics in the Age of Enterprise Culture

Andrea Phillips
How to Work Together

Andrea Phillips
Manifesto for Institutional Change

Jessica Baines
Free Radicals

Kajsa Persson
Vissa har kallat det akademiskt självmord
Intervju med Stellan Vinthagen i Fria Tidningen

Michael Flood, Brian Martin & Tanja Dreher
Combining Academia and Activism – Common obstacles and useful tools

Art Hazelwood
Art, Artists and Activism 1930s to Today

Lars Bang Larsen
The Mass Utopia of Art Activism

Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers
Creative Resistance: Why We Need to Incorporate Art Into Our Activism

Guillermo Gomez Pena
Ethno-Techno: Writings on Performance, Activism and Pedagogy

Sebastian Loewe
When Protest Becomes Art: The Contradictory Transformations of the Occupy Movement at Documenta 13 and Berlin Biennale 7

Chantal Mouffe
Artistic Activism and Agonistic Spaces

Magic and Politics: The Irrational as Strategy for Resistance

7 March 2015

Workshop at Skogen

The workshop Magic and Politics: The Irrational as Strategy for Resistance at Skogen

The workshop and discussion forum at Skogen was moderated by Annika Lundgren, Niklas Persson and Kanslibyrån.

Whereas the thematic for the first seminar was an investigation of the relationships between art, activism and academicism, this workshop aimed to develop new strategies for political resistance. This was done by following a successive series of conceptual and practical exercises in which the participants of the workshop undertake worked with concepts such as the use of abandoned forms of knowledge, the populist politician as illusionist, the irrational as destabilizing element, everyday activities as rituals and the art of doing nothing in a production-focused society.

The Archive for Resistance Strategies

The Archive for Resistance Strategies

The Archive for Resistance Strategies, as installed at Skogen


The archive is a central part of the research project Performing Resistance and accommodates a continuously growing collection of strategies for political and societal transformation. Strategies are collected from various contemporary art practices and works of art theory during the seminars, workshops, study-circles and other events and activities emanating from the project. The collected material acts as a source for Lundgren's continued research and performative work, inside and outside of the art institution.

You can visit the online version of the archive at or use the physical version of the archive at Skogen. Anyone is welcome to use the material in the archive and is encouraged to contribute with new strategies or additional content for already existing strategies.


Send a mail to Annika.