On Konstmuseum and spring…

Whoa, sun is finally in the city! Thank God I caught some last rays today, when I had a nice fika with friend-of-mine, after long day in wood workshop (which is located in basement, so I can only dream about sun there…). My degree project is ruining my social life and I am slowly turning into pale mindless zombie, therefore I am really grateful for every little break I can have. Outside seating are popping all over the city, so it´s great to hang out outside after all those rainy days! Me and my friends are planning some hiking trip to Skatås-Hindås area, the trail is called Vildmarkssleden Trail and it´s 38 km long, so that should took away all the stress which is piling up in our bodies!:) On 26 April there will be Hanami, Japanese feast where you´re adoring blooming cherry trees, in Botaniska Trädgården! Hanging around blooming cherry trees is good enough, but on 26 April there will be also some cultural program on top of it. More info here.

Yesterday I went to Göteborgs Konstmuseum, where I haven´t been for really long time. Except their permanent collection of European (mostly Nordic) art from 15th century to today, there are three temporary exhibitions. Photography by An-My Lê, sculptures and painting by Charlotte Gyllenhammar and results of DIY project.

An-My Lê is Vietnamese-American photographer, who explores war conflicts through still and moving images, which are balancing somewhere between documentary and fiction. In her recent project called Events Ashore, she travelled with American armed forces and documented their everyday life. The large format pictures depict everyday life of US soldiers deployed abroad, the contrast between routine everyday acts and exotic sceneries around. Of course, those routine acts of armed forces are very exotic as well, compared to our everyday acts. In contrast to Events Ashore there is  series of smaller black & white photographs called Việt Nam. In sceneries from Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and rural Vietnam An-My Lê rediscovers her homeland after the conflict. Another An-My Lê´s projects you can see there are Small Wars, 29 Palms and Charlie Don´t Surf.

An-My Lê. Retrieved from http://blog.art21.org/

In her works, Charlotte Gyllenhammar, is playing with perspective and perception. She is challenging both spatial and moral preconceptions of a viewer, leaving herhim unsecure about what she sees. To disturb established orders is one of the important roles of art and Charlotte Gyllenhammar is doing great job.

Charlotte Gyllenhammar also returned to the image of the woman suspended upside down, a motif she explored in still and moving images and recently in casted sculptures.

“The image of the woman stayed with me and it took me several years to find a way of relating to the motif. In the end I was able to approach her by changing perspective. I stood underneath the suspended woman and saw her from below. Suddenly it was another image entirely. Even if you understand what is hidden behind the surface . the woman´s exposed genitals – you cannot actually see them. There is a big difference.”

For me it is about the integrity of the motif, not to expose the motif to an assault by its depiction. It is an approach to the subject that I think is important and dilemma that one must consider when portrays something vulnerable.”

I have complaints to way of showcasing her work though. All works are exhibited in dark rooms, illuminated with spotlights, which leave her highly textured sculptures half consumed in black shadow or overly highlighted on the other hand. In my opinion it destroys the details of the work and it´s an unnecessary exaggeration of already highly expressive art-pieces. Image below is from Christian Larsen gallery and it stands in contrast to installation in Konstmuseum.

Charlotte Gyllenhammar. Retrieved from http://www.christianlarsen.se/.

Enjoy the first sunny days of upcoming spring and don´t forget to check out those exhibitions before their end.

All the best,

Jakub

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