Peter Rosvik’s performance is action based image making that thematically focuses on identity.
Rosvik works with identity from a personal framework. From a history of moving back and forth between two countries and rural and urban existence. From this history emerged very narrow modes of being. Rosvik’s performance work reflects on the alienation of an individual when they cannot perform within the narrow parameters given. When only way of existing is through self-mutilation and abuse. Rosvik also explores the paradox that through certain types of self-abuse you can be accepted, fit in the canon of maleness. Eventually, the price of fitting in is psychological and social disintegration.
Rosvik’s visual language swings between that of romantic and downright subversive. Rosvik creates visual images through actions. As part of his work, he uses references from punk and protest scenes that he is active in. For him, these are not borrowed aesthetics, but instead, he presents an environment that has accepted him to the visual sphere. He speaks from within the movements. He shifts something that is pushed to the sidelines into the focus of our attention. The subversive quality of Rosvik’s work is even more present in his harsh noise projects. These are soundscapes that he produces contact microphones and fx pedals distorting and magnifying all the findings. These layered sound walls push the viewer either to fall into it or to move further away.
Rosvik’s work is seldom easy for the viewer. It exposes the emotional scales of frustration and anger.
Often there are present modes of self-harm that the audience members are in a position to stop but have a hard time knowing if they should. After all, we are dealing with art here. Rosvik plays with the delicate aura of art to ask what is more critical, suffering from an individual or the prevailing order? The fact that so many members of the audience deny that they have any agency to disrupt the order or any responsibility to stop self-abuse is telling about the values of our times. The capability to pose this question is the strengths of Rosvik’s brutally personal and in your face work.