We Still Carry the Fire (2013 - 2017)

We Still Carry the Fire is a project on the topic of human relationships to fire. The project revolves around mobile wood fired kitchens that provide various opportunities for social interaction and cooking using fire. The kitchens are continuously developed taking into account experiences from previous excursions.

The Bike Kitchen at Vinterviken, Erik Sjödin 2013

[The bike kitchen in Vinterviken 2013. Photo: Erik Sjödin.]

The bike kitchen offers seating for five and has five sets of plates, mugs, and cutlery - a number common to Japanese tea houses. The stove that is fitted on the bike trailer is a tent stove that was originally developed to be used in disaster situations. The kitchen is also equipped with a small axe for making kindling and chopping wood as well as various utensils for cooking food.

Unfortunately the tent stove is not particularly efficient for cooking since a lot of heat dissipates through its sides instead of heating the cooking pot. The bike wagon is also not optimal, as it is cumbersome to transport when it isn't attached to a bike. For example while moving it in and out of storage. The bike kitchen is therefore being retired and reworked into a new mobile wood fired kitchen that will combine the best of both the bike kitchen and the rocket stove kitchen below.

The Rocket Stove Kitchen at Bergen Kunsthall 2013. Photo: Erik Sjödin.

[The rocket stove kitchen at Bergen Kunsthall 2013. Photo: Erik Sjödin.]

The rocket stove kitchen is equipped with a rocket stove and a pressure cooker and it has plates, cutlery and seats for three. As Henry David Thoreau put it: "one for solitude, two for friendship, three for society." The rocket stove has proven to be very efficient, especially in combination with a pressure cooker. It can in practice be used for cooking for larger groups of people than the bike kitchen. The rocket stove was built by an american backyard manufacturer who marketed the stove using the slogan "For hot meals in hard times".

The Tin Can Kitchen at Rävudden 2013

[The tin can kitchen at Rävudden 2013. Photo: Erik Sjödin.]

The tin can kitchen is a set of two stoves made of discarded tin cans. The small stove is suitable for heating a pot of water. The larger one can be used to cook food. Both stoves are built following do-it-your-self instruction videos found on youtube. The stoves are fitted in a mobile wooden box together with plates, mugs, and cutlery. The kitchen is suitable for cooking for one to two persons. The tin can kitchen has been retired since it provides no real benefit to more compact and portable camping stoves or the rocket stove kitchen above.

NOTE: It is generally not permitted to make fires in densely populated areas or during hot and dry summer months. Before making a fire: 1. Check with the fire department if it is allowed to make fire. 2. Don't make fires if it's dry and windy. Fire can spread rapidly. 3. Always have fire extinguishing equipment close by. 4. Always be at least two persons, in case something should happen. 5. Make sure you can call for help if there is an accident.

The kitchens have been used in various context in Stockholm (SE), Bergen (NO), and Oslo (NO) between 2013 and 2017, including at: Bergen Kunsthall in Bergen in April 2013, with Maretopia at Stockholm Culture Festival in August 2013, with Interior Architecture students at Konstfack in Stockholm in November 2014, at Slakthusatljéerna in Stockholm in May 2016, at Dome of Visions in Stockholm in 2016, and at Losæter in Oslo 2017.