Espen Sommer Eide – Selected Works

Espen Sommer Eide – artist/composer


I feel my eyes drying up. I am lost in a desert of broken letters. Literarily.

Struck by a sudden premonition I see my next two weeks before me: working day and night proofreading a dictionary that translates between two languages, neither of which I understand a single word.

Today has been a technical research day. How to digitise a dictionary. How to wield the computing power to my needs. How to teach a blind computer to read.

The first goal: to build a database of the Skolt Saami language. A dying language in the arctic regions of northern Norway, Finland and Russia.

The next goal: To travel to northern Finland and collect samples of all the words of the Skolt Saami language. To film one informant per letter of the alphabet reading all the words.

The final goal: To build an art installation for the new Skolt Saami museum in Neiden, Norway - an exhibition of the totality of a dying language. At the push of a button, one by one of the words will be given to the visitors. One word each, given as a task - for the visitor to take responsibility for and remember for the future.

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