Simone Alexandra (Denmark)
Börje Almqvist (Sweden)
Minna Forssberg (Sweden)
Mattias Härenstam (Sweden)
Hendrik Zeitler (Germany)
Deborah Fronko (USA)
Malin Griffiths (Sweden)
Christopher Landin (Sweden)
The exhibition was organized as part of the course Curating and Cultural Production Strategies: Galleri Experimentell at Valand Academy, Department of Fine arts. (Galleri Rotor 16-19 August 2012)
The exhibition also includes excerpts from poetry, films, theory and paintings by T.S Elliot, Alfred Hitchcock, David Lynch, RadioLab, Susan Sontag and Peter Tillberg.
The Corridor Expands represents a notion of moving through a narrow passage that suddenly opens up, revealing other paths and ways of moving. It is a complex vascular system where we realize we can travel in all directions towards the familiar and unknown. With each step we are provided new opportunities for contemplation, exploration and discovery.
The exhibition originated with one artwork, Closed Circuit ( In the Middle of Sweden) by Mattias Härenstam. In this video a camera travels down a suburban street, is swallowed into a pothole, passes through a giant intestine, and exits through an orifice onto the street again. Härenstam´s artwork strongly resonated with us, stimulating numerous chains of associations, references and questions - such as, suspense, mortality, guts and gore, suburbia,the shower scene from Hitchcock´s Psycho, black holes, truth, the eye, what is real, and why are we here? As a way of visualizing these connections, a mind map was drawn to serve as a method of working towards an exhibition concept. However, upon completion, we found the structure of the map intriguing and it became the blueprint for the exhibition.
Several works by other artists were discovered througt this investigation and now play an equal role in the exhibition space. Artworks, objects, poetry, film clips, and text on walls each illustrate a point on the map and invite the viewer into an existential and strange exploration.
Simone Alexandra is the creator of the work-in-progress This is a sign. One of the photographs in this series features an installation of a levitatating ball of earth and roots. Based on this work she was invited to recreate the installation in the gallery. This new artwork, Sign #9, incorporates the unexpected; roots without a plant, wich for us was a representation of the unknown.
Visual Empathy / Visuell ömhet
In Visual Empathy / Visuell ömhet, Almqvist reflects on his experience with an injury - caused by osteoporosis - and the medical interventions to correct it. In this work, a photopolymer gravure on handmade Daphne paper from an X-ray and CT imaging, his goal is to give the images a visual quality revealing the empathy, pain, and fragility of the human being. Rather than simply serving as a surface for visual art, the sheets of handmade paper symbolize the fragility of human skin. As Börje Almqvist says of the artwork, ” The aesthetics involved in the making of handmade paper can, in a way, describe humanity. On the surface, all sheets of paper appear alike, but on closer inspection not two sheets are the same”.
Closed Circuit (In the Middle of Sweden)
Härenstams artwork appears to express that something unsettling underlies the surface of everyday life. Closed Circuit (In the Middle of Sweden) begins with a scene referencing the painting In the Middle of Sweden by Peter Tillberg, a street in a quiet orderly middle-class neighborhood is marred by a large pothole. In an interview with curator Power Ekroth, Härenstam says, ”the pothole in the painting seemed like a point for transition into something unknown”. Thinking in terms of digestion, Härenstam utilizies this scene to enact a sequence of events in which the onlooker is captured in an ongoing flow extending from the street down through the pothole, into a mouth, then a large intestine, out a series of orifices and onto the street again.
While working with this long-term project Camera Obscura/Jammed (2008-2011), Zeitler became interested in how photography as a medium affects the way we perceive the world. Based on this research we invited Hendrik to build a large walk-in Camera Obscura into the south room of the gallery. The aim of this curatorial gesture was to present a physical demonstration of the apparatuses of visual perception as they are received and reinterpreted within the mind.
Women Under the Influence
Forssberg´s Women Under the Influence is composed of videoclips illustrating the idea of the hysterical, self-destructive woman in contrast to the controlled, rational man, as portrayed in several feature films.The work is intended to challenge the idea of the woman as unstable and close-to-nature compared with the rational man. In the film clips the male characters are a prerequisite for the survival of the female characters; restraining them or preventing them from harming themselves or others.Through repetition Forssberg suggests that the cliche of the fickle female is not only sustained by the male characters in the films but also do the filmmakers representation of women.