Sovereign Automata

Complete playthrough of forgotten rules and closed systems

KOLONIEN group show

A list of the Series of Play-works :

Hnefatafl Screenprinted board on table, wooden pieces, Gold Kubb set, Adapted mysterious wooden play board, Golden Consensus instructional tickets

Games are enclosed systems of logic and law that operate inside the demarcated magic-circle of a game board or predefined space. Created by a logic that is complex only in its limiting of possibility. The mythic stage is amplified and filled with meaning through its natural metaphor to the movements of people, kingdoms, systems of warfare and struggles for power.
The forgotten rules of a game that has been superseded by a more interesting body of politics, statistics and ruminations. Scenario building in a world of free radicals where there are seemingly endless possibilities, scenes and arenas of conflict to be played-out, played-through and played-off.  A game that is recast in the shape of things to come and rebranded as a solemn remnant of the past, ancient only in its continuation of violence against mere pawns. A game that attempted to capture and reanimate the physics of “real-life”, along with the resurrection of dinosaurs, but fails to realise the reason for the simulation.

Images of contemporary players drinking and enjoying Hnefatafl and the ancient equivalent


(Knuckle/Fist Table)

Hnefatafl is an ancient boardgame played in Scandinavia and Northern Europe from around the 4th Century until it fell out of fashion in the 12th century and its rules were mostly forgotten. This restaged version of Hnefatafl in the garden colonies of Rødovre is meant to be played with a certain skepticism regarding the inherited knowledge of the games rules. There are two forces with twice as many pieces surrounding the outnumbered tribe with the king piece (hnefa/fist/chief) and the object of the game was to safely evacuate the king piece to the sides or corners of the board or to capture it. It is supposed that it represented a typical viking style of combat with the smaller raiding party having to take away victory over a greater force but this kind of conflict is perhaps more relevant than chess in today's arenas of weighted conflict?

You need to find an Ancient Consensus

A riddle asked of King Heidrek by Odin in disguise about a forgotten game piece from the game Hnefatafl from The Saga of Hervör and Heidrek.