Iben West



Noticebord, England
I samarbejde med Anders Gammelgaard Nielsen

We had a great collection of flags in our house. Living with these flags has made us aware of the strong sense of nationality that these flags represent. No matter what we do with the flags they are heavily loaded with connotations of nationality and territory.

Among the collection we have made a selection of just two flags. The Danish flag Dannebrog that dates back to 1219 and the English flag Saint George’s Cross dating back to the 1270s. Originating from almost the same time in the history, the Middle Ages and the time of the crusades, having the same colours, red and white and even sharing the Christian Cross they are very alike and yet so different. Distinguished by history, tradition, land, language, nationality they evoke different feelings, memory and a strong sense of cultural identity.

However, set in a contemporary context the two flags immediately instigate a sense of antagonism and the existence of borders. Would it be possible to erase the borders and leave a sense of unification by the simple act of folding the two flags together and let their colours and pattern intertwine or would it be an act of confrontation or even provocation? What is the symbolic power of flags? Can this be measured by the act of folding.