The project Moving Mountains is a kind of pilgrimage resembling that of Nils Holgersson in the children’s story told by Selma Lagerlöf, but Lab La Bla’s journey extends over time, space and the materials that separate their childhood home (Luleå) and the place where they live today (Malmö). Unlike Nils’ magical adventure on the back of a goose, where he observes the landscape from above, Lab La Bla’s work is an orientation through it. From north to south, they explore the relationships between the landscapes and the people who take, use and consume their materials – at the same time as they discover new things about themselves, where they come from, and where they are heading. Along the way, Lab La Bla examine the co-existence of the landscapes, the people, and the materials, and how they are constantly changing each other.
The film is accompanied by the furniture series ‘BBQ’ – a tribute to the industrial spruce – a rich resource that is rarely used for furniture manufacturing due to its softness. The wood has been coloured by marinating, rubbing and massaging each piece in a mixture of mining waste and floor dust from Swedish iron ore and copper mines and then glued together with a form of pine resin.
Axel Landström and Victor Isaksson Pirtti together form the “koncept factory” Lab La Bla. The duo make between opposites – mining and agriculture, soft and hard, the wanted and the unwanted, remote and urban. Their research led practice uses materials as a lens to examine the fuzzy boundaries between man, industry and nature.