Studio 17, Nytorget 17, Stavanger 30th of April-3rd of May 2015

Anna Roos showed the installation "Sans Papiers" in Studio 17. The title indicates several levels of reading. The main material in the exhibition was paper, which immediately points to a paradox as the title "Sans Papiers" can translate to "without paper." The artist worked site specific and brought paper, egg shells, thread, needle, torches, pencil, pen and text into the premises. She worked in the space all the way up to the opening with the material brought in.

The installation consisted of folded paper that became spacial structures. Some were mainly geometrical and stringent in shape, while others seemed to be failed attempts left in the exhibition, crumpled. Some of the paper leaned more towards the traditional two-dimensional shape where the imprint of empty tags played an important part.

The text is taken from earlier texts written by the artist. They are a kind of remix of public conversations. In recent years Anna Roos has developed an interest in reports, statistics, regulations and plans concerning site development, crime fighting, living conditions and city planning. There is something extraordinary with documents like this. You can come across terms like "the ideal user," "decent people" and "unwanted elements." The artist asks who is then "the non-ideal user," who are "the indecent persons" and who are the elements that we don't want in our communal public space. Because as it turns out, the unwanted elements referred to, are indeed human beings. For the time being, the artist is also concerned with how refugees are met and treated in the world. Do we have systems that allow us to remain distant? How do we address and talk about people escaping their own country?

Where there is an open heart, there is often a pulse.

Where there is an open house, we have to avoid dark corners.

We have to make sure no unwanted elements can find shelter, can find rest, can take place. Artist's text translated into English.

Screenprint 76 cm x 57 cm

Thanks to Josef Albers

Folded paper, egg shells, torch app. 70 cm x 70 cm x 140 cm.


Different terms have been used to describe a person without legal permit to stay in Norway; amongst them are "illegal," "irregular," "undocumented" or "hidden" immigrant or refugee. In English the term "undocumented immigrant" is often used, and in French they use the term " sans papiers." In recent years the term "papirløs" ("eng: without papers") translated from French have been more widely acclaimed after 30 Norwegian organizations stressed this as a preferred term. One organization (Kirkens Bymisjon) has criticized the term "illegal immigrant" as the reference to a human as being illegal can be problematic. The term doesn't always/necessarily mean that the person don't have papers of identification, it can also be that he/she lacks papers to legally stay in the country.

Translated to English from

The artist served egg halves with mayonnaise at the opening.

Crumpled paper. 3 x 4 embossed prints, each 66 cm x 50 cm.