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Art Transcending Boundaries

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We hope that social, gender and national boundaries imbue those within a sense of cohesion, but then there is always the bird in its golden cage. And we assume those kept out often struggle for acceptance, but community norms would never continually evolve to yet higher planes on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs if the givens in its past were never challenged by the ‘outcasts’.

The boundaries defining art making face great similarities: as artists embrace the digital age, the digital forms evolve how they define a painting and any image; along with the revolutionary creation by innovative superimpositions on classical materials and well-loved social icons in mediums that range from canvas to copper plates. It has even artistically bred the taxidermist’s impositions of the inorganic on the organic!

 

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Exhibition: Power Play
Artist: Mette Björnberg
Where: Galleri Magnus Karlsson, Fredsgatan 12
When: 14 October to 11 November

With new sculptures and objects in painted wood, textile and mixed media, Mette Björnberg’s “Power Play” recurs as the title for a series of nine wall objects centering on the female sex as a reaction to current international politics and events, rather than from a personal story.

Reflecting on a picture of an old Polish woman from a demonstration for abortion rights that has had a strong impact on her, Björnberg’s sculptures shows her great courage to make herself seen and heard; to haunt those who now dare to implement their own trajectories.




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Exhibition & Artist: Martin Kozlowski
Where: ANNAELLEGALLERY, KARLAVÄGEN 15 B
When: 12 October to 12 November

Martin Kozlowski‘s work emphases what digital developments can add to painting; illustrating the transitional states between digital and analog painting to explore possibilities the digital form offers.

Just like Photoshop and other software designed for digital drawing, Kozlowski’s paintings are based on building the final image through manipulation of layers; ones built with large sweeping movements of spray and acrylic paint on canvas. Thus allowing him to register speed and distance while highlighting the relationship between depth and the flattened image.

 

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Exhibition: Kodak Moments
Artist: Balder Olrik
Where: Galleri Charlotte Lund, Johannes plan 5
When: Till 11 November

At the mere age of 19, Dane Balder Olrik graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in 1985 by making dark photo-based paintings, often with a sense of imminent doom; rapidly going on to solo exhibitions at Nikolaj Kunsthal, Brandts Pakhus and Galerie Faurschou in Copenhagen, which also showcased him at several international art fairs; along with group exhibitions at Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig in Vienna, Pratt Manhattan Gallery in New York, and Ars Fennica in Finland.

In 1998, Olrik gave up art, devoting himself entirely to digital invention on our subconscious and perception; co-founding GoViral.

Returning to the art scene since last year, Olrik’s “Kodak Moments” depict a form of non-places that we pass without seeing on our way to something else. Monochrome fields are imposed digitally on the images, blocking out information about the place to enhance their anonymity. Yet they have the same enigmatic quality evident in his earlier paintings – with manipulated colours and a harmonious serenity pervading his imagery.




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Exhibition: Slint
Artist: Emma Hartman
Where: Galleri Andersson/Sandström, Hudiksvallsgatan 6
When: Till 11 November

“Slint” presents new paintings of landscapes in which Emma Hartman’s strong visual sensibility drives her colourful creation of abstract narratives on canvas and copper plates.

Moving between the abstract and the figurative, the narrative elements derive from the contrasting meeting of colours: soft creamy sky touch over the dissolved or crisp horizon in a boundless way continuing into elements like clouds, mountains, plains, meadows, beaches and moores.

Some parts resemble shallow watercourses, others seem to depict the sea with layered, muddy and opaque colours to emphasize a sense of weighted movement towards an experience of reaching the bottom and an end; all wrapped in a tangible, almost sensual sensibility.

 

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Exhibition: Elfenbenstornen*
Artist: David Molander
Where: Cecilia Hillström Gallery, Hälsingegatan 43
When: Till 11 November

* The Ivory Towers

Working with collages from historical art works digitally transformed into multilayered compositions, David Molander’s new works are a plethora of new material from Cranach’s Renaissance paintings, Japanese woodcuts from the 18th and 19th centuries, contemporary comics and Indian miniature paintings; drawing from landscape painting, mythology, portraiture and woodcuts.

Intuitively dissecting the images in terms of composition and texture, Molander lets his own imagination guide him in what may be described as a deliberate escape from reality through computer gaming, fantasy and popular culture.

 

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Exhibition: The Red Wine is Already Ripe in the Grape
Artist: Haruko Maeda
Where: Christian Larsen, Hudiksvallsgatan 8
When: Till 11 November

Austrian-based Japanese artist Haruko Maeda produces highly intricate works of art with an elaborate precision that reminds us of traditional techniques and the dexterity of goldsmiths in stuffing small animals into beautiful but macabre works through a combination of the organic with the inorganic, beauty with the hideous in a dialectic game culminating in a perfect transformation of the opposites Eros and Thanatos.




Officiellt kungaporträtt: Elgaland-Vargaland © KREV 1992 Foto: Annika von Hausswolff

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Exhibition & Artists: Elgaland – Vargaland
Where: Moderna Museet, Exercisplan 4
When Till 12 November

On 27 May 1992, the Kingdoms of Elgaland-Vargaland were declared for artists Leif Elggren and Carl Michael von Hausswolff to pursue the project of establishing the realms that challenge the structures we take for granted by annexing and occupying all geographical border areas, including mental, digital and other conceptual and real territories.

So Elggren and von Hausswolff open embassies, issue passports, invite people to receptions and national days. The kingdoms have their own flag, stamps and currency, and can boast some one thousand citizens today.

The venture, which centres on the genesis and function of nation states in modern times, is both playful and serious. Their omnipotent project expands and transcends the boundaries of art as a separate coherent entity.

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Exhibition: Annika Larsson: Dog (2001), Pink Ball (2002), Bend II (2002)
Where: Andréhn-Schiptjenko, Hudiksvallsgatan 8
When: Till 11 November

Annika Larsson has become a major international figure in her field over the past decade and a half through her explorations of social mechanisms of dominance and subjugation, control and powerlessness. Her figures frequently reveal an unsettling blend of narcissism, obsession, loss of control and vulnerability.

Although the protagonists in her early videos tend to be men, Larsson ́s main interest are not male stereotypes, but rather the codes expressed by body language and the social power structures that underlie them. The male body is a stage and a vehicle for political, sexual, inter- personal, feminist and queer content.

 

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Exhibition: NOT OUT!
Artist: Allen Jones
Where: Wetterling Gallery, Kungsträdgården 3
When: 12 October to 9 November

As a pioneer of abstraction, British pop artist Allen Jones’ sculptural work and paintings investigate the representation of the human figure, especially the female body, and has occupied a prominent position in the art world for over five decades. Yet few artists have evoked as much debate and have been perceived as provocative as Jones.

Embracing popular culture, his work is characterized by its direct visual language, a colorful playfulness, and explicit eroticism related to music, dance and amusement. In turn, they had a major influence on popular culture itself, on film, design and fashion.

In recent years his iconic female figures have been complemented by a male counterpart, to focus on gender interaction.

 

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Exhibition: Storm clouds
Artist: Charlotta Eidenskog
Where: Kaolin, Hornsgatan 50
When: Till 25 October

Charlotta Eidenskog sees the mud as a building material that reflects her thoughts about the society we are in, with work focused on freedom, boundaries, vulnerability and belonging: What we take for granted can be for someone else an unattainable dream. What is our responsibility to our neighbors and ourselves?

Working with ceramic sculpture where an investigation in form, color and composition in relation to space is in focus, her work has a sense of space and often the starting point for sculptures, materials and techniques to create a mood in the room.

 

Information and photo credits: The respective galleries.

Feature image: Lotta Geffenbald’s “Purl and straighten” exhibition at Candyland, Gotlandsgatan 76 from 13 to 29 October.

 

About Wai Lin Coultas

Wai Lin Coultas
Wai Lin is a Singaporean married to an Australian. Besides being mad about putting her own twists and fusions into recipes from diverse continents, she spends her time writing and subbing for an Aussie newspaper as well as covering the contemporary arts scene in Singapore as a gallery docent and online reviewer. She and her hubby love Stockholm's exciting arts and culture, along with the food and wine it offers.

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