Tag Archives: Sculptures

“I WOULD LIKE TO SET A TREND!”

Artist talk: Mimosa Pale (Finland)

When I think about Finland, a bridge between east and west across my mind. The Finnish people — speaking Swedish by law but in general so different from the Swedes. Their own language — Finnish — so different from everything I´ve heard. And how does the Finnish heartbeat sounds like? Same but — in some way — different?

Mimosa Pale is our first Finnish interviewee. She is an incarnation of coolness — not only because she is an interesting artist — Mimosa also runs a hat store, where she sells her own design  Our guest blogger, Elina Lajunen worked with her in Berlin and introduced us to Mimosa´s intriguing world — of hats.

The curator; Katharina Rettelbach used these kindly words to describe Mimosa:

Her artwork is a synthesis of sculpture and performance art. In her often interactive work, humour, lust and celebration lead to carnevaleque staging. She likes to switch context being it museum, theatre, street or church. She acts in cabaret shows with her singing saw, creates haute-couture for everybody and makes fashion shows in her Berlin flat. Mimosa Pale has visited various international performance art festivals and is currently running Atelier Himo in Berlin.

We are getting one step closer to the Finnish heart. Read Mimosa Pale´s interview here.

Photograph taken from Ausland-Berlin

P.s. If you are Finnish; we hope you can write an article and unveil the secrets behind the mysterious Finnish art scene. Drop us a line at konsthopp@gmail.com

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Filed under Artist Talk, Finland, Installation, Konsthopp, Live art, Performance, Sculptures, Visual Art

“ART IS AN AMAZING WAY TO DEAL WITH LIFE”

– Interview with Tessa Praun (Sweden)

When did you start curating? Tell us something about your educational background and curatorial experience?

Curator Tessa Praun with Ai Wei Wei at his ateljé in 2010/ Photo by Magasin 3

 I started curating for real on my current job, the private art foundation Magasin 3 Stockholm Konsthall. My background is in the Humanities Study Program and Art History at Stockholm University. I did my final internship at IASPIS (International Artists Studio Program in Sweden), an artist in residency program that really got me interested in contemporary art. From there I moved on to shorter experiences at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice and as assistant curator at Kunstverein München, amongst others. In 2004 I started as assistant curator at Magasin 3 and became curator two years later. Since then I have curated exhibitions with artists such as Miroslav Tichy, Christian Boltanski, Annika von Hausswolff, Marijke van Warmerdam, Ai Weiwei, etc. and have done collaborative projects with other art institutions in Europe and been working with Magasin 3:s own collection.

What is your personal relationship with Ai Wei Wei and his work? How did it come about that you got to curate his show at Magasin 3?

I was very taken by Ai Weiwei’s project “Fairytale” that he did for Documenta XII, this impressive idea to invite 1001 Chinese people to come with him to Kassel in Germany in the summer of 2007. It is a fantastic social multi layered project that lives on through stories that are being told as well as through physical remaining parts with an amazing visual strength. Experiencing this work in Kassel made me read more about Ai Weiwei and follow the work he did after.

In 2010 I was in China and had the chance to visit Ai Weiwei in his combined home and studio in Beijing. This was in a time when he was already very pressed by the Chinese authorities and he had just been under a three days house arrest when we met. Meeting him in his own environment and under these pressing circumstances effected me strongly and coming back to Stockholm I invited him to have the exhibition here at Magasin 3 this spring.

Fairytale (dormitory) by Ai Wei Wei 

Tell us more about the Ai Wei Wei exhibition. What has been your main role as a curator of the show?

From the beginning I knew that I did not want to make a retrospective exhibition, instead I wanted a selection of works that focuses on China as synonymous to mass production and Ai Weiwei’s concern for the individual as a necessary part of the big mass. Ai Weiwei did the first selection of works that he and I then discussed and added to. Only a few months into working together, in the beginning of April 2011, he suddenly was arrested and kept detained on no legal grounds in an undisclosed location. Not knowing what was going to happen, if and when he would be released, me and my colleagues had to decide how to move on. Together with Ai Weiwei’s assistants we came to the conclusion that the best thing that we could do in that situation was to continue the preparations of the exhibition, it felt even more so important to show his work and make his voice heard. Despite my deep concerns for Ai Weiwei’s situation I had to focus as much as I could on completing the exhibition and do so in the most respectful way.

World Map by Ai Wei Wei

Can you explain the importance of the reading room being a part of the Ai Wei Wei exhibition? Why emphasize on all that information?

At the point when Ai Weiwei was detained and couldn’t be part of the preparations of the exhibition anymore, I felt it was important to give our visitors a deeper insight into Ai Weiwei’s situation, why he is on a collision course with the regime and consequently has become so known also outside the art world. So I developed a reading room. A physical one in the actual exhibition space, side by side with the artworks. It includes reading material, a sound archive where various people contributed with their stories and reflections on Ai Weiwei, interviews and documentaries on and by Ai Weiwei. But also a digital one, a special homepage gathering articles, documentaries, the sound archive, filmed documentation of all panel discussions that we have arranged in connection to the exhibition etc. in order for people to explore his work both as an artist, activist, blogger, architect. He himself does not really distinguish these roles. I found it interesting to bring this up through the reading room. Both the physical and digital reading room have proven very useful and much appreciated.

Video work by Ai Wei Wei 

Do you think new and digital media used in contemporary art has brought new aspects to arts and curating? Yes or no, explain why.

Well yes, I think since these new media are part of society today it is only a natural development that also artists explore them and art institutions adapt them in communicating with the audience. In some cases art can be brought closer to the viewer through various new media and attract those who are hard to reach in a more traditional manner. In our part of the world we live in a time with a tremendous fast pace. It is important that art can both adapt to these new circumstances but also offer a brake from just that. The content has to be the driving force otherwise the experience will be lost completely. It is a challenge for both artist and curator to find the right balance.

Stool by Ai Wei Wei

Photographs by Konsthopp

What qualities do you think a good curator should have?  

A good curator knows how to both support and challenge an artist, is curious and open minded, dedicated to the project and flexible to deal with different characters and situations under time pressure : )

From your point of view, how does the future of professional curating look like? What are your personal wishes, hopes and perspectives on your future curatorial plans?

My main motivation for being a curator is to learn more about life. Being close to art is an amazing way to deal with life, to explore notions of the present, history and future, to be inspired to thoughts and feelings. If I can transmit this also to other people then I think I am doing something good.

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Filed under Ceramic Art, Conversation, Curator, Curator Talk, Documentary, Fine Art, Installation, Political Art, Sculptures, Sociopolitical art, Stockholm, Textile Art, Uncategorized, Video Art, Visual Art

IMAGINATION WITHOUT BORDERS

Closed: 21st of April – 6th of May 2012, Hafnarhúsið (Reykjavik)

Students from the departments of Fine Arts, Design and Architecture at the Iceland Academy of the Arts, exhibited their graduate projects at Reykjavík Art Museum – Hafnarhús, earlier this month. The exhibition is usually impressive and this year was no exception.

Let the pictures speak for themselves.

Photographs by Konsthopp

Washing machine, washing the Icelandic flag ; super-sized swing ; cloud machine ; gramophone (Jónófón) in new costume — the imagination was prevailing at every turn at Hafnarhúsið and wholly without any borders.

Cheers everyone!

Date: 21st of April – 6th of April 2012

Artists: Graduation students from Fine Arts, Design and Architecture Department

Place: Hafnarhúsið, Tryggvagötu 27, Reykjavik

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Filed under Art, Design, Digital Art, Drawings, Fashion, Group exhibit, Installation, Konsthopp, Paintings, Photography, Political Art, Reykjavík, Uncategorized, Video Art, Visual Art, Young Art

– 33

On-going:, 14th of April – 6th of May 2012, Kling & Bang (Reykjavik)


Demons, fiends, devils, sorcerers, monsters, werewolves …

Somehow — spring usually brings out my inner demons. And sometimes I´m lucky enough to meet some of them — unexpectedly — on my way.

Sigga Björg creates a mysterious world of all kinds of creatures in her latest exhibition: ” – 33 ” at Kling & Bang Gallery. Up to this point, the artist´s creatures have been anonymous but now you can meet and even buy the little devils.

Please, let me introduce; Max, Gaab, Dianna, Jacobb, Benedict and Najim.

“Max” (or I think this is Max)

“Gaab”

“Dianna”

“Jacobb”

“Benedict”

“Najim”

“Max” (or I think this is Max)

Photographs by Konsthopp

I´m going to end this short entry with a text from the exhibition catalog under the heading Looking the Devil in the Eye by Goddur:

“Demons, fiends and devils visit our dreams and visions. They appear on everyone’s inner hemisphere. So do angels, nymphs and little elves, flashing before us on the peripheries of our vision. However, very few are willing to acknowledge this and accept it, let alone draw it on paper and thereby transfer the vision into this world. Most people dismiss it as fantasies and hallucinations, ashamed even to mention that it happened. Nevertheless, the devils and demons symbolise certain things. They harbour our hidden impulses and feelings.”

Guðmundur  Oddur  Magnússon (Goddur)

Today is the last day to look the devil in the eye!

Date: 14th of April – 6th of May 2012

Artist: Sigga Björg Sigurðardóttir

Place: Kling & Bang Gallery, Hverfisgata 42, Reykjavik

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Filed under Art, Drawings, Konsthopp, Reykjavík, Sculptures, Video Art, Visual Art

MOTHER NATURE IN MARCH

This month´s favorite: Recycled art

From waste to resource … 

In recent years, waste products and other materials have become more and more prominent in the creation of art. Here are some recycled art masterpieces — made from junks!

“Ghost in the machines – The Beatles” by Erika Iris Simmons

“Binary Bound” by Nick Gentry

“Harmonix Rock Band” by Kyle Bean

“Hard disk drive robot” by Miguel Rivera

“What came first” by Kyle Bean

“The rabbit” by Robert Bradford

“Collage 09” by Derek Gores

Virginia Fleck

Photographs are taken from Hongicat & google image

From litter off the streets — to odds and ends in the house; these artists from all around the world find a use for what others would toss without a second thought. Cassettes, discarded toys, floppy disks, hard disk drives, eggshells, recycled clothes & magazines are among things that can — occasionally — be turned into gold.

In the last year Konsthopp have visited numerous of exhibition dedicated to some sort of recycled art. Examples includes; Buffé (Stockholm), Cotton Rags (Reykjavik), Sæborgin; Kynjaverur og ókindur (Reykjavik), Monument (Oslo), Losun (Reykjavik) and Sorp er auðlind (Reykjavik).

Stay posted about more recycled art-related topics next days. We are having a guest blog this week!

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Filed under Art, Art Magazine, Collage/Clip Art, Konsthopp, Net stroll, recycled art

“TAKING A SHIT IN YOUR OWN FIST”

Artist talk: Haidar Mahdi (Sweden)

“Honest hearts produce honest actions” 

The highly honest artist; describe himself as “an insecure soft guy, a bit out of track.” (According to his profile picture, soft would absolutely not be the adjective I would use!)

He doesn’t have any favorite artists and the capability of clay brings him to a state of blissfulness. This is Haidar Maidhi; a 25-year-old Swede, currently living in Stockholm and the latest representative in our artist talk. You can read the full interview here.

From the exhibition “Black Mass,” Haidar Maidhi´s solo exhibition at the Royal Institute of Arts, Stockholm 2012.

Photograph belong to Haidar Maidhi

 

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Filed under Art, Artist Talk, Ceramic Art, Konstfack, Konsthopp, Sculptures, Solo exhibit, Stockholm, Uncategorized

THE DEMAND IS HIGHER THAN EVER

Curator talk: Marín Björt Valtýsdóttir (Iceland)

When did you start curating? Tell us something about your educational background?

My first experience with curating was back in high school, setting up our graduation art exhibition. We were many and had very different backgrounds, so it was quite a task putting up the show. However, we did work and the outcome was better than we had hoped fore! As for further curating for my behalf, there haven’t been many opportunities. Curating is not a part of our program in the arts department of University of Iceland, the classes that teach the subject are small classes and fill up quickly so it is difficult to get in them, so going abroad is the only option to become a professional curator. But since we do know what curating is and we are curious about it a student gallery was opened fall of 2011. The gallery, which is called Artíma Gallerí, is giving us opportunity to try out curating and finding other people that are interested in the subject of curating and running a gallery.

What is the artistic field of your curatorial practice?

Usually I deal with 2d artworks like paintings or drawings. It was interesting when we decided to include one of Hekla Björt Helgadóttir’s pieces, which consisted of a lamp, broken plates and a stone heart, in the 3rd show of Artíma Gallerí. Once we started planning, it turned out that the piece would work better as an installation using the afforded space in the gallery in a different way than we first envisioned.

Is there a difference in curating different field of arts, etc. paintings, videos, interactive works or a piece of net art?

In retrospect it didn’t seem to matter much to me in which form or medium the artworks were but of course sooner or later practical matters will need to be addressed. In an ideal situation, the curator takes away the burden from the artist, of matching the artworks to an audience in a meaningful way. In reality this often results in a very close collaboration between the curator and the artist, which can be slightly less glamorous. Hammering nails into the wall or holding the ladder while attaching support strings.

From Artíma #3, work by Hekla Björt Helgasóttir, curated by Marín Björt Valtýsdóttir. Photos/Konsthopp

What kind of qualities do you think a curator should have?

Curating is a broad field of work, and every show is different. I think the artist makes the biggest difference in putting up an exhibition and how fluently it goes. When the collaboration between the artist and the curator is good, magic can happen.

A good curator sees the needs of the artist and the exhibition and does what it takes to combine it in to an interesting exhibition. Flexibility and diplomacy is important, as are social and communication skills since a big part of putting up an exhibition is working with other people and finding common grounds to work from. A curator is also a facilitator, concerning herself with practical matters.

Do you think that new and digital media used in contemporary art has brought new aspects to arts and curating? Yes or no, explain why?

Digital media is very fascinating because it can be very vivid and alive. Due to my young age I cannot say much about the effects it has had on curating since digital media used as an art form is older than I am. What I can tell is that digital media and interactive works are becoming more and more popular in the museum world so the medium is marking its place in the ‘traditional’ art world.

In times of “You Tube” and the Internet, do you think a curator is still needed?

I don’t see the Internet as having much effect on curating, as in making curating unnecessary. Museums and galleries are becoming more and more popular each year and new art fairs seem to be popping up all over the world, so the demand for a curator, if anything, is higher than ever. Youtube creates an abundance of information; years worth of video are uploaded daily on Youtube alone. My partner pointed out to me that curating is engaged in actively by the online community. People have created channels or blogs with little or no original content, consisting of other people’s artworks both collecting and connecting them, cross media.

What are your curatorial plans for the future? What are your personal wishes, hopes and perspectives in curating?

Curating is a very interesting field of work, it offers you an exciting environment to work in, where you get to know artists and their work in a close and remarkable way. I hope to do more curating in the future since I find it an enjoyable experience. If I were to further my studies in curating, I would have to go abroad and at the moment I have no plans, I would be lying though to say that I haven’t looked into it.

What is the future of professional curating from your point of view?

Curating is a profession that seems to be on the rise. With more and more museums bursting up and art fairs existing in every country I think the field of curating is going to bloom in the coming years.

From Artíma #3, work by Hekla Björt Helgasóttir, curated by Marín Björt Valtýsdóttir. Photo/Konsthopp

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Filed under Art, Art festival, Collage/Clip Art, Conversation, Digital Art, Group exhibit, Installation, Konsthopp, Media, Paintings, Reykjavík, Uncategorized, Visual Art