Artistic Research Processes at Konstnärshuset (Stockholm) IV

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Helena Hildur W, installation with painting and prints at Konstnärshuset;
photo by Gert Germeraad

For my own participation in this exhibition, I brought painting #IV (still unfinished) as the central piece of an installation also comprising prints from Art Lab Gnesta’s risograph and a few items from the studio, along with an artist book with text and photographs from the project.

The book is available, in limited edition (30 copies in total); to order, please leave a note in the commentary field below.
Full text – in Swedish, although with an English abstract – can also be found here:

Om varseblivning av kvalitet i gestaltande processer: del 1, en individuell process.

Artistic Research Processes at Konstnärshuset (Stockholm) III

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The exhibition at Konstnärshuset is finished. For you who missed it, or couldn’t come – here’s to give you an idea of the rest of the exhibited works, along with links to full text papers (in Swedish):

Konstnärshuset Lena Oja b

Lena Oja: The management of a Cervical Spine/
Ridkonstens samtal: en vägbeskrivning

Konstnärshuset Auli Laitinen 2b

Konstnärshuset Auli Laitinen 1b

Auli Laitinen: In My Nature/I min natur (2012)

Konstnärshuset Madeleine Aleman b
Madeleine Aleman:
A Meal in Swedenborg’s Summer House/
En måltid i Swedenborgs lusthus (2012)


Antonie Frank: [WHITEWASH] (2012)

And a few more projects which come as artistic statements, with the verbal part yet unpublished:

Konstnärshuset Agnieszka Knap 2b

Konstnärshuset Agnieszka Knap 1b

Agnieszka Knap: What Could it Be?/Vad skulle det kunna vara?

Konstnärshuset Ivar Sviestins 2b

Ivar Sviestins: The Human Face/Människans ansikte
(note that the left picture is an extreme zoom-in, focusing the eye of a portrayed person – who is, in his turn, watching the photographer

Konstnärshuset Roland Ljungberg b

Roland Ljungberg: The Place/Platsen – artist book (2013)
PhD Roland Ljungberg is – together with Emma Göransson – the developer and leader of the course Artistic Research Processes. His dissertation (“En resa från det ordlösa”) is a personal mapping of the artist’s professional skills and knowledge.

All photos by HHW.

Artistic Research Processes at Konstnärshuset (Stockholm) II

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Konstnarshuset-27 Konstnarshuset-47

Konstnarshuset-44 Konstnarshuset-45

Konstnarshuset-36 Konstnarshuset-35


Konstnarshuset-21 Konstnarshuset-20


Exhibition Konstnärliga Forskningsprocesser at Konstnärshuset;
all photos by Gert Germeraad

Today is the last day for the exhibition Konstnärliga Forskningsprocesser at Konstnärshuset, Smålandsgatan 7 (Stockholm). Opening hours 12 – 18!

These photos are credit to Gert Germeraad, whose own project combines abstract drawing with sculptural representations of  French children lost in the Holocaust.
Ana Maria Almada touches on experiences of carnival and captivity, expressed in ritual performance.
Photographer Angelica Harms pictures the majority population’s view on Roma men and women begging in the streets of Stockholm.
Arne Widman and Magnus Carlén are the co-creators of The Symmetry of Being, an installation with several parts – among them a collection of chemical substances, photo portraits and a chair with a mounted plastic lung.
Emma Göransson’s artistic contribution comes as a Post Colonial Feminist Sami Kayak with an embroidered statement. Along with her work as an artist, Emma Göransson holds a PhD in archaeology and teaches at Konstfack Arts, Crafts and Design College (Stockholm).

For full text on each project, please click links!
(Gert Germeraad’s paper Rationality, Intuition and Emotion; Exploring an Artistic Process is written in English. For other papers, text is in Swedish.)

Artistic Research Processes at Konstnärshuset (Stockholm) I

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The booming interest for artistic research is, I think, a shift of focus from result to process. When ‘art’ – in some contexts – has become synonymous with ‘investment’… and in others, primarily an act of provocation… the processual aspect along with reflexivity, and the intention to make a positive contribution, is well communicated within the framework of artistic research.
Would you agree?

Exhibition open today and tomorrow, 12 – 18, at Konstnärshuset (House of Artists), Smålandsgatan 7, Stockholm.

For Swedish speakers, here’s a series of interviews on some of the projects and the idea of establishing an independent platform for artistic research; six short films made by Art Lab Gnesta and nigo produktion:
“Hör mer om ALG/R på Supermarket”

From Supermarket to the House of Artists (Konstnärshuset), Stockholm

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Konstnärshuset seminarium b
Seminar with presentation by Ivar Sviestins.
Foreground: sculptures from the series “French Children of the Holocaust” by Gert Germeraad

Konstnärshuset Arne Widman b
The Symmetry of Being, Arne Widman and Magnus Carlén 2012

Konstnärshuset, Stockholm – a somewhat tattered gem of a building from 1899, housing two artists’ associations – is next stop. Here, the Konstfack course projects are represented in the traditional exhibition format, focusing less on process and more on artistic achievements. A seminar with artist talks and a lecture by artist and PhD Emma Göransson complements the exhibition.

Konstnärshuset Lena Oja b

The Management of a Cervical Spine, Lena Oja 2012 – 2013

Artistic Research Processes III

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Agnieszka Knap: What Could It Be? – enamelled copper plate object (one of four)

From ritual performance and classical horse dressage conceived as art, to interpretations of ambiguous images… The second day of examination continues with What Could It Be? Of jewellery and perception; a project by Agnieszka Knap, invoking the spirit of psychiatrist Hermann Rorschach and interconnecting craftsmanship, perceptual processes and psychoanalytical psychology. Four out of the ten inkblot images that constitute the Rorschach test have been transformed to three-dimensional objects, cast in multicoloured enamel on 0.1 mm copper plate – thinner than eggshell – and the written text reflects (upon) the process of meaning-making as a parallel to the making of an object.

Gert Germeraad: Rationality, Intuition and Emotion

The title of Gert Germeraad’s work could have been a running head for the exhibition as a whole; his own project, a labour of empathy and sincerity, combines sculptural representations of French children disappeared in Auschwitz with large abstract drawings and a profoundly personal text. The three sculptures are modelled in a detached, non-modernistic manner, by adapting measures taken from photos of the lost children. The drawings – there are four of them – similarly vary in size. Text, drawings and sculptures together establish a space of utmost darkness pervaded by light and love.

Ivar Sviestins: Reflections on the Global Photo Project

Ivar Sviestins is the photographer behind the Global Photo Project, representing nothing less than humanity itself in a reverse motion of statistic numbers back to individual human beings. The series of portraits picture citizens of a specific country; the choice is made to match the country’s life expectancy data, the framing is strict. And again – paradoxically – the impersonal, almost rigid, set-up helps to uncover the dignity of each person. The course project takes this one step further, through a set of animations; artistically exploring relations between the individual and the collective, between the portrayed person and the beholder, between the moment and the flow of time.
The last examination work, the video installation Whitewash by Antonie Frank, also touched on personal identity and human rights issues; her starting point is her native Canadian origin, only recently recognized. Two video projections were displayed simultaneously, literally down-to-earth, on the lowest part of two adjacent walls, a third one hovering above; black-and-white newsreel cuts, featuring First Nation people of Canada and the US, alternating with freshly made interviews with native Canadians reflecting on their stolen history.

The themes keep coming back, reappearing like the strands of a rope.

Artistic Research Processes II

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Examination in the Artistic Research Processes course; thirteen participants of different artistic professions, inquiring into thirteen distinctly different life-worlds. During the first day of examination, topics ranged from encounters with Romani people in Stockholm to a dinner with spirits.

Auli Laitinen: In my Nature

Auli Laitinen works primarily with jewellery as a catalyst of thought, dialogue and interaction; in her project, brooches inscribed with the English text “I AM SWEDISH” were worn by a number of people for some weeks of everyday life. The examination installation and text, and the following discussion, circled sensitively around related experiences  of complex identities.
Identity-making was also a main theme in Angelica Harms’ interviews and photos, picturing Romani men and women of different origins in various settings and social positions and discussing the majority population’s attitudes towards Romanies.
Arne Widman’s exhibition The Symmetry of Being (co-produced together with Magnus Carlén) was on display this spring in one of the major churches of Stockholm; the light and flow of the exhibition seemed to permeate his examination text, turning it into a prose poem.
Also the project of Madeleine Aleman took place in a very specific setting, namely the summer house of Emanuel Swedenborg. Here, a leitmotif in her personal biography found an unexpected artistic articulation; Madeleine Aleman’s own grandfather was a pastor in the New Church of Swedenborg, and during a performance (captured on video by Antonie Frank), the spirits of Isabelle Eberhardt, C G Jung and Emanuel Swedenborg himself were invited to an exquisite dinner and addressed in speech and sound by the artist.

Sophia Rilby: Picturing the picture

Deeply immersed in the process of shaping a material, the work of Sophia Rilby evolved as a study of growth, folding and closure – employing metal wire and strings of clay much like phonemic units in a developing artistic language.

Lena Oja: Dialogue on Equestrianism

Lena Oja’s project was to ride a horse from her homeplace (some 70 kilometers north of Stockholm) to Konstfack, to end up by performing a dressage program in the very space pictured on this photo. The installation – comprising her text printed on waste paper and glued to the wall, with an empty rostrum placed in front – literally re-presented her action, ardently communicating the essentiality of art.

Ana Maria Almada: masks for ‘Juku’ ritual performance, and Anna Odlinge: circular cloak and patterns

With the mind of a contemporary encyclopaedist, Anna Odlinge collects and arranges constituents of knowledge – superposing graphic patterns such as the Yi Jing/I Ching hexagrams, the squares of a chessboard, star maps and capital letter initials. At this stage of the process, they generate floating relations open to meaning-making through dialogue, and at the same time seem on the verge of being soaked up into a circular white cloak.

Ana Maria Almada’s creation of a healing ritual – ‘Juku’ – started out by crafting carnivalesque masks and costumes. By their use, a ceremonial place outside of normal time and space could be established, and a choreography involving four persons was performed to express and integrate experiences of enclosure, partition and loss.

Artistic Research Processes I

art, recent work

This course, given at Konstfack University College for Arts, Crafts and Design during spring 2012, has been nothing less than a gently evolving artistic coming-out – for me, and for a number of my fellow participants as well. Course seminars fused clear-eyed analysis with integrative dialogue; a mental space where, recurrently, deep artistic and intellectual challenges were perceived – much thanks to the encouraging emotional safeness. A valid theoretical and practical context elaborated underway, by means of individual art-making interleaved with lectures, talks and workshops. All thanks to professors Emma Göransson and Roland Ljungberg, who settled the premises – a work of Quality, if any. And, in the next step, also thanks to the extraordinary group of participants, each one responding with full professional experience along with empathical and analytical skills: Agnieszka Knap, Arne Widman, Ana Maria Almada, Angelica Harms, Anna Odlinge, Antonie Frank, Auli Laitinen, Gert Germeraad, Ivar Sviestins, Lena Oja, Madeleine Aleman and Sophia Rilby.

From the studio – preparing for examination.

My own contribution is, mainly, a series of meditations; re-experiencing the artistic process as such and trying to capture verbally the situations where artistic choices are perceived – mapping the grounds for decisions made. Here I’m deeply indebted to Robert Pirsig’s discussion on Quality (in his novel Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance), and I further attempt to establish a discursive bridge between art as action and method and the cultivation of introspective analysis in contemporary science. The text is written in Swedish, and will be available in Swedish DIVA database within short – as will the texts from the rest of the group.
Here are two links to a scientific forum for research on related topics:

Journal of Consciousness Studies

Journal of Consciousness Studies (archives)