Villagers and Vagabonds

Film screening + director in conversation

A small village in the mountains of Norway is bypassed by a new highway tunnel. To make up for the loss of traffic and trade, a group of artists are invited to create a public art piece. But the villagers, unimpressed with the process from the start, erupt in outrage as it begins to take shape. Work is halted and the piece is removed for public safety. As the dust settles, the community wrestles with the unknown future of their village and the question: “what is art?” In a surprise turn, the artists are invited back to finish what they started. Sometimes first impressions can be misleading.

The first screening will be followed by a conversation with director Merethe Offerdal Tveit. The second screening will be introduced by the director.

Click here to download our cinema program for October and November 2020.

About the film

Kvam, a small village in the picturesque mountains of Norway, used to be a center for travelers crossing the country. But in recent years the population has dwindled. When the main road is rerouted through a tunnel, the 793 inhabitants fear for their livelihoods. But then a new group of visitors arrive...

The art collective FFB is commissioned by the county to create an installation in the center of the village as part of a plan to revitalize the region. FFB creates site-specific installations that use Indigenous Sami traditions and contemporary architecture to explore new perspectives. But the villagers are not impressed with FFBs disruptive artistic process, nor with the work that begins to take shape. Before the piece can be finished, they erupt in outrage. After a series of vandalism incidents, work is halted and the piece is removed for public safety. The project is deemed a fiasco and ridiculed on national television. As dust settles, the community struggles to envision a future for their village and wrestles with the question: “what is art?” In a surprising turn of events, FFB is invited back to finish what they started. It seems appearances can be deceiving...

About the filmmaker

Merethe Offerdal Tveit (b. 1985, Rosendal) works with documentary film and art film. She has produced and directed several short films about rural Norway, which she loves most. Her film Absalon Beyersgate 10 an experimental short film on Super 8, was shown at Nordisk Panorama in 2010. She has a degree in directing from Nordland Art and Film School and a Masters in Film Art from OsloMet.

Villagers and Vagabonds
Merethe Offerdal Tveit
50 min
Norwegian, with Norwegian subtitles