Archive for May 10th, 2014

10
May
14

Exhibition: ‘A Way of Life – Swedish Photography from Christer Strömholm until Today’ at Moderna Museet Malmö, Sweden

Exhibition dates: 1st February – 18th May 2014

Curator: Anna Tellgren, curator of photography, Moderna Museet.

Featured photographers: Yngve Baum, Martin Bogren, Stina Brockman, Anna Clarén, Dawid, Ann Christine Eek, Agneta Ekman, JH Engström, Nan Goldin, Neil Goldstein, Catharina Gotby, Denise Grünstein, Kenneth Gustavsson, Walter Hirsch, Gerry Johansson, Rune Jonsson, Eva Klasson, Nina Korhonen, Tuija Lindström, Anders Petersen, Håkan Pieniowski, Marco Plüss, Inta Ruka, Ulf Simonsson, Gunnar Smoliansky, Christer Strömholm, Lars Tunbjörk, Odd Uhrbom, John S. Webb.

 

 

Kenneth Gustavsson. 'Berlin' 1983

 

Kenneth Gustavsson (Swedish, 1946-2009)
Berlin
1983
© Kenneth Gustavsson Estate

 

 

Gustavsson’s photographs are characterised by a strong personal expression. With tireless consistency, he sought his inner visions in urban environments such as New York, Berlin and Paris. His exceptional talent for creating everyday magic makes him timeless and always topical. The eighties were Gustavsson’s most creative period. His photographs from Belfast are an extraordinary visual interpretation of conditions in a city wracked by terror and violence.

Kenneth Gustavsson grew up in a suburb north west of Stockholm. Between 1964 and 1967 he studied photography at the Fotoskolan in Stockholm, where the photographer Christer Strömholm was head, at the same time as Anders Petersen. After graduation in 1967, he and Petersen co-founded the Saftra photo agency (Saftra Reportage Fotografi).

The Swedish photo magazine Foto published Gustavsson’s work in the 1960s. Together with Anders Petersen, Gustavsson portrayed the Stockholm slums in an exhibition at the Stockholm City Museum in 1969. After not working in photography for most of the 1970s, a feature in ETC magazine in 1983 revived Gustavsson’s career and he went on to complete assignments in Belfast, Chicago, Reykjavik and New York for ETC. In 1984 he was awarded FOTO magazine’s Photographer’s Price.

The critic Gerry Badger has said of Gustavsson’s work that “it certainly is very post-war, deeply existential and luminously poetic. And, like most good photography, it is a beguiling exploration of the human condition and our relationship with the world.”

Text from the Wikipedia website

 

 

Another posting on an eclectic subject that this archive likes to promote, this time on Swedish photography… a subject that I know very little about.

Marcus

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Many thanks to the Moderna Museet Malmö for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

Tuija Lindström. 'Pia' 1983

 

Tuija Lindström (Finnish-Swedish, 1950-2017)
Pia
1983
© Tuija Lindström

 

 

Tuija Lindström belongs to the great legends of Swedish photography. Her images gained great recognition when exhibited in a group show at Camera Obscura. Lindström’s work was at this time centred on a narrative with focus on a female experience where the male gaze and patriarchal structures were investigated. This theme also characterised the photographic series ‘The Girls at Bull’s Pond’ (1991), which can be counted as Tuija Lindstrom’s real breakthrough. Other subject matters in her work revolves around memories and recollections, time and social issues.

Tuija Lindström’s work is characterised by material experiments inherent to the medium and the darkroom becomes a place for meditative, alchemical operations. Here the presences of the darkroom functions as a kind of performance art. A place of evasion where the craftsmanship evoke the sometimes coarse images soft shades, deep blacks and contrasts.

In 1992 Lindström was appointed professor at the Photo Academy, now the School of Photography at the Academy of Fine Arts in Gothenburg, where she came to teach until 2002. As the first woman on record Tuija Lindström is significant for the introduction of a more artistic and theoretical photography where philosophy and art history were incorporated in the training. An achievement that meant a step away from the documentary tradition that for a long time had characterised Swedish photography.

Text from the Female Artists in History Facebook page [Online] Cited 19/03/2021.

 

Martin Bogren. 'No title'. From the series 'Lowlands' 2011

 

Martin Bogren (Sweden, b. 1967)
No title
2011
From the series Lowlands
© Martin Bogren

 

 

In the 1990s, Martin Bogren developed a personal approach of documentary photography by following Swedish musicians and artists on stage, tour, and studio. His first book “The Cardigans – Been It”, published at the top of the group’s success in 1996 , reveals his work and launches his career. Martin Bogren however aims at going beyond assignments and music field : he focuses on more personal photographic work.

Travels encounters, (Notes, 2008, Italia, 2016), joy of first discoveries (Ocean, 2008), or teenage spleen (Lowlands, 2011, Tractors boys, 2013, Embraces, 2014) : his works reveal a vivid desire to avoid boredom and to reach an elsewhere. He gets in contact with his subjects as a silent witness, as a subtle and caring observer. Through grainy black-and-white and highly grey nuanced photographs, he succeeds in combining a documentary approach with a sensitive affirmation of his subjective vision.

Martin Bogren “manages not to disrupt the world into which he immerses himself, with decency, with attention and acuity, and with respect, without judging – holding his breath (…) One thinks, of course, of all those photographers who – from Robert Franck onwards, from Anders Petersen to Michael Ackerman – have known how to give us the gift of their way of looking, telling us that they wanted to show nothing more than what they needed to show and to say.” (Christian Caujolle, Foreword to Tractor Boys, 2013)

Text from the Vu website [Online] Cited 19/03/2021.

 

Martin Bogren. 'No title'. From the series 'Lowlands' 2011

 

Martin Bogren (Sweden, b. 1967)
No title
2011
From the series Lowlands
© Martin Bogren

 

 

Christer Strömholm (1918-2002) is a predominant figure of Nordic photography and has inspired generations of young photographers. His images of the transsexuals of Place Blanche in Paris is some of his most known work. Included in the exhibition are photographers that have followed in the footsteps of Strömholm. Works, taken from the Moderna Museet collection, by photographers such as Yngve Baum, Agneta Ekman, Ann Christine Eek, Gunnar Smoliansky and not least Anders Petersen, who has most prominently carried on the Strömholm legacy.

“This is an exciting exhibition not only due to its extensive selection but also because we are experimenting with intersecting three separate exhibitions into one entirety,” says John Peter Nilsson, Director, Moderna Museet Malmö. The exhibition also highlights three contemporary photographers. J.H. Engström (b. 1969) has been seen as a successor to Christer Strömholm and Anders Petersen, his Tout va bien is the newest series to be featured. Anna Clarén (b. 1972) is just like Engström part of a generation of photographers that emerged in the late 1990’s. In her bright colour photos we meet people and spaces close to the photographer. Martin Bogren (b. 1967) is the third contemporary photographer, he is active in Limhamn and his series Lowlands (2011) tells a personal tale, in black and white, about a small village in the Skåne countryside.

“It’s fantastic to be able to show an important part of Swedish modern photography history using the Moderna Museet collection. Martin Bogren, Anna Clarén and J. H. Engström are all three contemporary photographers that are good examples of how strong and exciting the Nordic photography scene is right now,” says Anna Tellgren, curator of the exhibition.

The title of the exhibition comes from a quote taken from a lecture by Christer Strömholm. He explains that “… for me, working with photographic images is a way of life. When I think of it, and when I look carefully at my images, all of them, each in its particular way, are nothing but self-portraits, a part of my life.” That approach has shaped all photographers represented in the exhibition. Several self-portraits, portraits of friends and some portraits of Christer Strömholm can be found in the selection.

Press release from the Moderna Museet Malmö website

 

Anna Clarén. 'No title'. From the series 'Holding' 2006

 

Anna Clarén (Swedish, b. 1972)
No title
2006
From the series Holding
© Anna Clarén

 

 

This work might be regarded as a diary documenting my life during a period when I took pictures 24/7, even in the night I let the shutter be wide open, exposing while I was asleep. The people in the pictures are persons that are close to me; parents, my sister, my closest friends, my self and also some people I only met by accident on the street.

In this work I use external, concrete attributes, things and events to describe interior associations, an imaginary reality. A reality which for me is entirely real.

The title of the book is a term derived from psychiatry, which means that each and every child should be entitled to a loving and caring environment by her or his parents. This child will enter life with the feeling of being held. Held by her parents, her self and by life itself.

The one child that for any reason grows up in a family where this love is not possible, will, as an adult, constantly find herself in an endless, desperate search for holding. And in some cases will experience a feeling of falling.

The search for somewhere to hold on to will express itself in various ways; symbiotic love affairs, destructiveness, escaping, a constant feeling of alienation, of being outside.

The book’s story is, in many ways, a self portrait, but deep down inside, human beings are very alike. In our searching, the questions, confusions, we may find a universal strand of humanity; the difference between us lies often in the answers. And therefore, this work is a self portrait with universally human questions/stories.

Anna Clarén. “Holding,” on the Josef Chladek website [Online] Cited 19/03/2021.

 

Anna Clarén. 'No title'. From the series 'Holding' 2006

 

Anna Clarén (Swedish, b. 1972)
No title
2006
From the series Holding
© Anna Clarén

 

Christer Strömholm. 'Hotel Central, Paris' 1951/1981

 

Christer Strömholm (Swedish, 1918-2002)
Hotel Central, Paris
1951-1981
© Christer Strömholm/Strömholm Estate

 

 

Christer Strömholm is one of the great personalities of Swedish photography. Born in Stockholm, he discovered photography via graphic art in the late 1940s. His photographs from this period are hard black-and-white compositions featuring walls, shadows and minimalist settings. During his sojourns in Paris in the 1950s and 60s, he developed a style reminiscent of street photography, and this is also where he produced his famous portraits of transsexuals at Place Blanche. Strömholm also went on numerous photographic expeditions to places around the globe in the early 1960s, including Spain, Japan, India and the USA. Early in his career, he began teaching at Kursverksamheten in Stockholm, and his classes eventually became the legendary Fotoskolan, from which some 1,200 students graduated between 1962 and 1974. Strömholm’s photographs and methods have inspired many generations of Swedish photographers, but he did not become known to the broader public until 1986, with the major exhibition 9 Seconds in My Life at Moderna Museet.

Text from the Lens Culture website [Online] Cited 19/03/2021

 

Christer Strömholm. 'Hotel Central, Paris (Self-portrait)' 1951/1981

 

Christer Strömholm (Swedish, 1918-2002)
Hotel Central, Paris (Self-portrait)
1951-1981
© Christer Strömholm/Strömholm Estate

 

Christer Strömholm. 'No title' 1963/c. 1985

 

Christer Strömholm (Swedish, 1918-2002)
No title
1963 – c. 1985
© Christer Strömholm/Strömholm Estate

 

Anders Petersen. 'Marlene' from the series 'Café Lehmitz' 1967-1970/1986

 

Anders Petersen (Swedish, b. 1944)
Marlene
1967-1970/1986
From the series Café Lehmitz
© Anders Petersen

 

 

“To me, it’s encounters that matter, pictures are much less important.”

“I can’t describe reality; at the most, I can try to capture things that seem to be valid, the way I see them.”

.
Anders Petersen

 

 

JH Engström. 'No title' from the series 'Tout va bien' 2014

 

J. H. Engström (Swedish, b. 1969)
No title
2014
From the series Tout va bien (Everything is fine)
© JH Engström

 

 

Swedish artist JH Engström (born 1969) is an inveterate bookmaker. Most recently, his published works have explored ideas of place and home, including “Sketch of Paris” (Aperture, 2013), “La Résidence” (2010), “From Back Home” (2009) and “CDG/JHE” (2008). After more than a decade of such thematic projects, “Tout Va Bien” returns to the looser, more associative approach of Engström’s critically acclaimed volume “Trying to Dance” (2003). The source for these photographs is nevertheless strongly autobiographical, as well as vividly metaphorical; a reemphasis of the artist’s belief in photography’s potential as visual poetry. The sequencing is highly charged with contrasts: black-and-white images mix with colour; the gentle beauty of coastal rocks clashes with a flash-lit image of the bright, blood-red placentas from the birth of his twins. The book leaves it to the viewer to map his or her own network of meaning from image to image, page to page.

Text from the Aperture website [Online] Cited 19/03/2021

 

JH Engström. 'No title' from the series 'Tout va bien' 2014

 

J. H. Engström (Swedish, b. 1969)
No title
2014
From the series Tout va bien (Everything is fine)
© JH Engström

 

 

Moderna Museet Malmö
Gasverksgatan 22 in Malmö

Moderna Museet Malmö is located in the city centre of Malmö. Ten minutes walk from the Central station, five minutes walk from Gustav Adolfs torg and Stortorget.

Opening hours:
Tuesday, Thursday – Sunday 11-18
Wednesday 11-21
Mondays closed

Moderna Museet Malmö website

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Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His art work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes Art Blart, an art and cultural memory archive, which posts mainly photography exhibitions from around the world. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne, a Master of Arts (Fine Art Photography) from RMIT University, and a Master of Art Curatorship from the University of Melbourne.

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