Fredrik Svensk

  • Britta Marakatt-Labba

    In 2017, the inclusion of Britta Marakatt-Labba’s vast embroidery Historjá (History), 2003–2007—a sweeping account of the Sámi people—in Documenta 14 risked framing the artist’s work merely as a manifestation of the current desire to decolonize the art world. But to so easily dismiss the light-handed narrative of resistance and oppression stitched into this work, which delves deep into the past, would be a mistake. Contained within the tapestry is the chronicle of the Sámi people, from the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century campaigns for their Christianization and the imposition of national

  • “Insomnia”

    The distinction between sleeping and waking is probably one of the most important in the history of modern art, dating back at least to the time when psychoanalysis exerted its influence on avant-garde movements such as Surrealism. Now, with our 24/7 society, the nonstop demands of work, consumption, and even social media are becoming harmful to our health. “Insomnia,” curated by the departing director of Bonniers Konsthall, Sara Arrhenius, presented itself as an attempt to map “the mental and cultural state that this constant accessibility creates.”

    What kind of navigation points did this

  • Anastasia Ax

    Anastasia Ax has an appetite for destruction, but of a certain kind. I remember her going wild in her work Exile, 2011, at the music festival Way Out West in Göteburg, Sweden. In a big tent, she built up a landscape of white sculptures in plaster, old books and fabric, and other materials. Accompanied by the darkest noise music (by Dasha Rush, Oni Ayhun, and Marja-Leena Sillanpää), Ax reentered the space and began to spit black ink on the sculptures while breaking them with her bare hands. Finally, the audience joined in and destroyed the installation by dancing and tearing down the sculptures.

  • Jonas Dahlberg

    On July 22, 2011, the far-right terrorist Anders Behring Breivik, dressed as a police officer, detonated a bomb at the Norwegian Parliament building in Oslo, killing eight people. He then traveled to the island of Utøya, where the Workers’ Youth League had a summer camp, and shot and killed sixty-nine people, wounding an additional sixty-six; the majority were teenagers. Swedish artist Jonas Dahlberg has been working on July 22 memorials in Oslo and Utøya, to be completed this summer. His recent exhibition “Diorama” made clear that he’s been up to many other things besides, and yet it was

  • Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art

    The eighth edition of the Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art, “A story within a story . . . ,” curated by Elvira Dyangani Ose, was by far the most pedagogically and conceptually consistent to date. Dyangani Ose was inspired by anthropologist Michel-Rolph Trouillot’s conjecture that history is written by many, and by Umberto Eco’s idea of “the open work” (as espoused in his 1962 book of that name). The majority of the nearly forty works by thirty-three artists and collectives that were presented at Göteborgs Konsthall, the Hasselblad Center, Röda Sten Konsthall, and surrounding