The Corner Time

Skammarkrókur Steinunn GunnlaugsdóttirA performance that took place at a poetry and performance night in K18, in Berlin. The whole event was in Icelandic and visiting- and Berlin based Icelandic artist and poets performed language based pieces.SkammarkrókurinnThe performance started with an out loud reading of a letter:

Dear guests,

I have misbehaved lately.

I have not acted in my best manner.

I know this, even though nobody has given me a verbal or written report concerning this, and I have not over heard anything about my offenses.

My offenses are not of the kind that violate the States Laws and therefore no reason for the authorities to bring me to justice and punish me.

But therein lies the tiles in the wound yes, I certainly feel embarrassed and I fully know my wrongdoings. But that alone neither wipes out nor equalize the crimes. Justice has not been enforced I have not done my time. I am in debt to justice!

Someone might say that my punishment is to carry alone the burden of the one who alone knows his crimes. But that is not the way a man pays his debts. The slogan; Do Not Do Nothing, is relevant here as in other cases of debts.

In great humbleness, over a long period of time, have I searched for an appropriate way to pay back my debts. I belief I have now found the way I dug it up from my childhood memories: The Corner Time! And when I heard that my fellow countryman were going to meet here in this city in December, I knew it was the right combination: The Corner Time and a community who knows my identity and that I grow up within because that is the only environment where this kind of punishment may have the desired effect – only in the presence of a community of fellow citizens can The Corner Time be an adequate punishment.

Dear fellow countryman,

I will do my Corner Time tonight. In deepest humbleness I ask you to keep in mind to give me no attention during the punishment – a negative attention can be better then non at all and that kind of attention could easily feed my urge to keep on on the wrong track. I hope you will enjoy the evening and the entertainments and not let my poor presence grab your attention were I will sit on the floor by your feet and pay back what I have stolen and against the unwritten laws that binds the society together.

I am grateful
I regret
I am not afraid
I regret
I take out my punishment pay my debtors
I regret

I bend down to the dust in hope that I might become integral again and that peace will prevail in the society regarding my crime and punishment.

Skammarkrókurinn - refsinginAfter the reading the convict crawled under a table and sat under it until the end of the night. By doing that the convict has taken out hers penalty – her sentence is completed. The witnesses and a video footage that was shoot from a camera that was placed on the convicts head, demonstrate this.