ta plats!


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Fortune Teller – gaming machine and oracle (2010)
Plywood, wood, swarf exhauster hose, wire, 40 white billiard balls, 40 black billiard balls, accessories for pneumatic tube systems (transparent PVC tubes, compressed air blow, start terminals), computer, 2 TV screens, label printers, cameras, prophecies.

TAKE PLACE! was a project and a group exhibition which was presented in 2010 at Kulturhuset, Stockholm. The exhibition made use of large parts of the building, on several floors, integrated with the building.

Featured artists: Felix Gmelin, Jacob Dahlgren, Lisa Torell, Lisa Jeannin & Rolf Schuurmans, Maud & Leth, Jesper Norda, Performing Pictures och Glimpse.

I participated with a new interactive game, Fortune Teller – a work in a social context, which was exhibited in the escalator shaft on four floors.
The game is a development of a previous game; Lek & Lögn (Play & Lies).
Fortune Teller is a site and situation specific work, in the sense that it is based on Kulturhuset as a cultural public space, but also in terms of gaming action.

Audio description Fortune Teller, extract


One of the aims was to highlight the issues of happiness, winners and losers, by having a comprehensive gaming machine, Fortune Teller, occupy Kulturhuset. The outcome of the game was that preconceptions about luck and chance, and their possible causes, were questioned and challenged, redefined and reshaped daily by the visitors at Kulturhuset. At the end of each round, participants were given a prediction on the basis of whether they were winners or losers, a prediction which also reinforced the notion of man as a winner or loser.

The exhibition TAKE PLACE! continues to expose throughout Sweden during 2010-2013. Link →
(Fortune Teller is not part of the touring exhibition.)


How people interact in a democratic society is on many levels similar to what happens in the interaction with the game. One can see the public space as a game plan on which the mind can move, and the definition of a public space takes more or less brace against the private.

In this way, I wanted the project to broaden the knowledge of the effects and impact the game Fortune Teller has in a specific public space, in a social, psychological, cultural, and political context, in relation to my artistic practice.


Fortune Teller (Black Wins Left) from Ola Nilsson on Vimeo.