Performance / In Swedish: We Feel a Desire for Caresses by Men (The Gothenburg Affair)

Sat 9 mar1:00 pm - 1:40 pm

We Feel a Desire for Caresses by Men (The Gothenburg Affair) is based on material from a trial process in the late 1930s against a circle of homosexual men in Gothenburg. During this time period, homosexual erotic encounters were often initiated in the city’s parks and secret passages but this circle of friends created a community around meetings in each other’s homes.

The court documents are influenced by the criminological and forensic psychiatric language of the interwar period but give, simultaneously, insights to the circle’s gatherings. Stories, desires and experiences were shared, they recited song lyrics, listened to music and danced together. They referred to each other by female names and described their relationships as a “spiritual kinship”. Conny Karlsson Lundgren’s performance includes excerpts from the interrogations, delivered by a performer in a choreographed dialogue with a collection of erotic photographs found in the home of one of the men. The scenography of the work is made up of wooden structures displaying the evidence used in the trial, a forensic chair with a measuring device and a speaker podium along with a pulsating, red light bulb – which also appears in Prologue, the first part of The Gothenburg Affair. A multitude of perspectives are embodied as the text alternates between the accused and the prosecutor. The performance ends in a crescendo with the couplet ‘Jazzgossen’ (The Jazz Boy) by Karl Gerhard from 1922, here sampled and edited by the music duo [inaudible]. The lyrics describe an early subculture of men using feminine-coded expressions, and the couplet may have been played at the circle’s many dance parties.

Admission to the exhibition is included. In Swedish. Limited admission.

We Feel a Desire for Caresses by Men (The Gothenburg Affair), 2021–2022
Performance approx. 40 mins (Swedish and English), structures in wood, archival pigment print on cotton paper, duo print on cotton paper, glass lens, mirror, tour guide system, vinyl record, vinyl record player, costume, loudspeakers, light bulb with mixer set to 120 bpm

Performers: Ido Grinberg and Eddie Mio Larson
Director and Script: Conny Karlsson Lundgren
Script Editing: Clara Diesen
Sound: [inaudible]–Amanda Lindbom Edwall and Johan Sundell
Translation: Conny Karlsson Lundgren and Benny Nemer
Wood structures: Mattias Norström

We Feel a Desire for Caresses by Men (The Gothenburg Affair) was part of the exhibition With New Eyes – The Interwar Period Seen Through A Lens at Göteborgs Konsthall 2021–2022. It is the second part of an extensive project that began with Prologue (The Gothenburg Affair), featured in the exhibition The New Eye at Hasselblad Center in Gothenburg, 2021. The Gothenburg Affair in its entirety was commissioned by The Hasselblad Foundation and made possible with the support of Erna & Victor Hasselblad Foundation Research Fellowship.

Image: We Feel a Desire for Caresses by Men (The Gothenburg Affair) 2021–2022. Performance. Photo: Hendrik Zeitler. 



Ticket release February 6. Ticket release for members January 30.