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The Festival

In First Person – The Festival is the first transgender curated and performed 3 day festival in Norway. The goal is to disseminate and expand the knowledge about the transgender community from an academic and theoretical perspective, with the hope to enrich and generate other narratives in our structural imaginarium about gender and especially the transgender spectrum. We gather around important ideas and celebrate the idea of transgender as a changing force in society.


The Festival includes lectures, performance lectures and panel discussions with professor and activist Susan Stryker, LGBTQIA+ family rights lawyer Erik Mägi, physicist and data researcher charlie negri, teacher and LGBTIQI activist Stein Wolff Frydenlund, artist and activist Mathilde Decaen and artist and filmmaker Kaeto Sweeney, among others.


This is a free event, hosted by Litteraturhuset i Bergen, Kunsthall 3.14 and KRAFT.


Festival Presenters



Transgender History: The Roots of Today's Revolution (Litteraturhuset)

My Window: The Transgender Lens (Kunsthall 3,14)

Susan Stryker, transgender activist and historian of the LGBTQI movement, will explore the concept of “transgender,” not as an identity but, rather, as a lens that reveals self and world in new ways. It is a perspective attuned to flux, transience, plasticity, and becoming, as well as to that which persists in spite of on-going transformation. Offering historical, philosophical, artistic and political perspectives drawn from autobiographical experience, Stryker will show how “transgender” can offer a window on the world.



Transgendered parenthood challenging legal and social norms

Transgendered parenthood is a challenge for the legal systems, as well as our perception of gender and parenthood. Traditionally, maternity is constituted by giving birth and paternity by marriage or being the origin of the sperms. The LGBTQI-movements have set the legal field in a major transition. This lecture presents the current legal upheaval surrounding LGBTQI+ parents in the Nordic countries while discussing pathways for the future.


Erik Mägi is a lawyer and doctoral student in private law at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. His research concerns the constitution of parenthood, norm-critical perspectives and legal design. He is co-author of the textbook “Stjärnfamiljejuridik” [Legal Regulation of Diverse Families] (Gleerups 2015). In the spring of 2016, the authors were awarded the Jörn Svensson Award for their work with LGBTQ rights.



Transcending sexuality

Through music, performance and a Ted talk; singer- songwriter- nurse- student Mathilde Decaen will take you along her own magical journey to rediscovering and reinventing your sexuality.


Mathilde Decaen is the leader of the Norwegian patient organization for gender incongruence. While holding a master's degree in economics, Mathilde’s diverse background includes past time as a teacher as well as currently studying to become a nurse. It’s never too late to embrace and reinvent yourself. She is also a musician that plays the piano, guitar and is trying to learn the violin.



Being vocal and trans

How do transgender voices contribute to diversity in society and gender presentations? I will talk about being trans and using my voice before and after transitioning. “How does my voice represent my personal identity and the changes of my voice reflect the voyage to the person I am today?” Being vocal does also imply having the opportunity to raise the voice for transgender and human rights issues. How are transgender representations met in the broader society?


Stein Wolff Frydenlund was born in Norway 1957. Non-binary, male oriented trans and LGBTI activist at FRI (1994–present), Amnesty International (2000–2018) and Transgender Europe – TGEU (2014–2018). Stein has a master’s degree in political science, and works as a lecturer at a high school, teaching Norwegian language. Stein is a parent with two grandchildren and is a singer in a mixed choir.



Computation and gender

A series of examples and reflections on how gender enters into the domain of computation, focusing on a trans and nonbinary perspective: how gender is encoded in software, how it is sometimes 'computed', the perils and discrimination associated with that, and how to try to do things right.


charlie negri is a physicist by education, researcher and data care-taker. Interested in the ethics & politics of algorithms deployed in socio-technical systems.



Searching for freedom: Kaeto Sweeney in conversation with Maria Rusinovskaya on reclaimed spaces, projected fantasies and wet looks. 

Screening of the film Martine (Kaeto Sweeney, 2017, 16 min) and a talk. 

Kaeto Sweeney is an artist and producer of queer club night ASTERISK, living in Bergen. When he is not dancing or partying, He is telling stories with words or films about dancing or partying. His work shapes itself around the different ways we tell stories and the way we receive them, of those that belong simultaneously from a personal and societal perspective. He uses these forms of expression to explore our collective understanding of ourselves, and to create a moment for empathy between artist, art, and public. 

His most recent exhibition is part of the Master graduation year of KMD, MA2020 at KODE 2, Bergen and ALLEGORIA was shown at Hordaland KunstSenter, Bergen. 


Maria Rusinovskaya is currently live programme curator at Bergen Kunsthall, where she has since 2014 been developing and presenting a comprehensive programme with discursive series, music programmes, performance and moving image. Maria uses collaboration and network thinking as a strategy to present new works and experiences whilst ensuring representation of diverse voices. Maria studied art history in Murmansk (RU) and Oslo, and previously worked as curator and producer at Pikene på Broen and at the Murmansk Museum of Arts. In December 2020 she will take over as the new director of Bergen Centre for Electronic Arts. 


Isak Bradley and Joakim Eide will join in on a panel discussion during In First Person : The Festival  to reflect on their experiences and growth while working on In First Person : The House [digital] and the upcoming theatre performance, In First Person: The Dance in October 2020. 

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