Margit Ellinor: forgotten images

Bente Geving


I began photographing my mother’s room in 2002. Around that time she began changing the arrangements of pictures and ornaments, fetching things out that had been stored in cupboards and drawers, and putting away other things that had previously been features of the room. She assembled various objects on tables, shelves and in cupboards. She tidied and sorted. I became fascinated by the colours of her compositions, and wanted to enter her world.


Sámi, home, Margit Ellinor, photography, memory, contemporary art

Full text: Geving_p.189-193 (PDF, 952 KB)


Biographical note

The artist Bente Geving, born 1952 in Kirkenes, Norway, explains her work as follows: ‘I am concerned about the context in life: between the personal life and historical events, between reality and dream, between the human made and the original. Between the spoken and the unspoken. I photograph my surroundings, make connections between places, past and present, put the images together in pairs or diptychs, in series which create new rooms. The images live their own life, they are changing and gain new importance through the viewer’s experience and imagination.’

Bente Geving has exhibited widely in Norway, Germany and Sweden, and her work is represented in collections in Norway and abroad. Recent exhibitions include, Down Under Up North, 2013–14, an art and documentary project about the Sydvaranger iron ore mine in Kirkenes, with Per Berntsen, Art Museum of Northern Norway, Tromsø. In 2014, Geving was awarded a six-year Artist Grant from the Norwegian Council.

An earlier version of this material was presented on the occasion of the project conference ‘Disturbing Pasts: Memories, Controversies and Creativity’ (20 -22 November 2012, Museum of Ethnology/Weltmuseum Wien, Vienna). To view the film footage on the Open Arts Archive,, follow this link: