Frida Sandström

  • Luca Capuano, Dheisheh refugee camp, 2016, photograph, dimensions variable. From the series “Refugee Heritage,” a photographic dossier commissioned by DAAR (Sandi Hilal and Alessandro Petti), 2016.
    picks December 22, 2021


    Could a refugee camp be acknowledged as a World Heritage Site, one that exists beyond the parameters of the nation-state? To answer this question, Alessandro Petti and Sandi Hilal (working together as DAAR, the Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency) have conducted extensive fieldwork in Palestine, Hilal’s country of origin. As the title of their exhibition “Stateless Heritage” suggests, they have focused on the relocations of life and culture forced upon Palestinians by Israeli settlement since 1948, producing, in collaboration with UNESCO photographer Luca Capuano, a series of images depicting

  • Iza Tarasewicz, Battling with Cosmic Forces, 2021, oxidized steel, dimensions variable.
    picks December 21, 2021

    Alice Creischer and Iza Tarasewicz

    In the mid-’70s, Josef Beuys, famously, shared a room with a coyote. Alice Creischer, a Rhinelander of the following generation, collapses artist and carnivore into a single figure with In the Stomach of the Predators, 2012–14, a twenty-two-minute video and mixed-media installation comprising costumes and props. Playing off the auspicious legacy of postwar American Conceptualism, the film foregrounds the voracious nature of capitalism through vignettes featuring four humanoid beasts—a wolf, a hyena, a bear, and a jackal–on a languorous procession from the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in rapidly

  • La Vaughn Belle, How to Imagine the Tropicalia as Monumental (detail), 2021, acrylic painting, ink, charcoal, pencil and cuts and burns on paper, 98 1/2 x 69''.
    picks December 16, 2021

    La Vaughn Belle

    In 2015, the Saint Croix–based artist La Vaughn Belle embarked on “Storm (How to Imagine the Tropicalia as Monumental),” a series of charcoal drawings of palm trees battered and bent by gale-force winds. Excerpts of some of these images resurface in her new large-scale collage How to Imagine the Tropicalia as Monumental, all works 2021, which also includes snatches of landscapes devastated by both natural and man-made disasters and was executed on paper damaged when Hurricane Maria hit the artist’s studio in 2017. Mounted over a corner in Ariel’s exhibition space in central Copenhagen, the

  • View of Jakob Jakobsen’s ANGST – a tragedy in three acts, 2021.
    picks September 10, 2021


    Sound, increasingly central in contemporary art, creates space through a variety of small, at times imperceptible movements in this group exhibition. In the video Urdiendo Ritmos (Weaving Rhythms), 2017, Héctor Zamora documents the hands and hums of Yucatán artisan hammock-makers, their slow wresting and weaving of fibers and closed-lip song contrasting with the voiceless hyper-productivity of capitalist labor. Hale Tenger’s poetic sound work Life, Death, Love, and Justice, 2018–21, is installed as a response to the deserted, silent woods surrounding the city’s southern harbor. The last living

  • Ceija Stojka, Untitled, 1995, acrylic on board, 27 3/8 x 39''.
    picks May 14, 2021

    Ceija Stojka

    Despite their vivid depictions of life and all its attributes—love, angst, curiosity, horror, and barbarism—Ceija Stojka’s paintings have a way of withdrawing from one’s gaze. The works seem to implode in their frame; on occasion, layers of black paint obliterate figures even as they constitute them. What remain are rectangular shells of floating content, anchored to an extraordinary biography: As a child of an Austrian-Romani family, Stojka was held at Auschwitz, Ravensbruck, and Bergen-Belsen, all before the age of twelve. It took fifty years for Stojka to take up the paintbrush.

    Faces, numerals,

  • Sandra Mujinga, Ghosting, 2019, soft PVC, denim, acrylic paint, oil paint, glycerine, threaded rods and rod coplings, dimensions variable.
    picks January 06, 2021

    Witch Hunt

    At Kunsthal Charlottenborg, the witch becomes a figure for contemporary crises of representation and identity, as well as the epistemological violence inherent to Western modernity. While the broad spectrum of necromantic imagery on view surpasses any historically specific critique of the notion of the witch, certain works speak directly to a uniquely Scandinavian legacy.

    In Danish-Greenlandic artist Pia Arke’s video work Arctic Hysteria, 1996, the artist presses her undressed body against a large photographic print of her still-colonized home landscape. The image is torn in pieces by the friction

  • Performance view of “In This Country, Comrade (a collation),” 2020. Photo: Hendrik Zeitler.
    picks October 20, 2020

    Annika Lundgren

    In Swedish theater, “collations” are procedures in which actors read through scripts for the first time, without dramatization. This impassive ritual informs Annika Lundgren’s exhibition “In This Country, Comrade (a collation),” whose spare set designs are accompanied by a trio of performers each Sunday. During these informal performances, a manuscript by Lundgren is read aloud as in a final round of edits, after which it will supposedly be published in an artist book alongside documentation of the performance and installation. As in her previous work with textual montage, Lundgren’s project

  • Oliver Ressler, Carbon and Captivity, 2020, 4K video, color, sound, 33 minutes.
    picks May 06, 2020

    Oliver Ressler

    Like a litmus test for dispossession, the Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the cracks in the surface of the market. From reproductive labor to international logistical networks, what hitherto was recondite for those not immediately subject to subsumption now appears as a multiplicity of naked emperors. The biggest of them all, the oil industry, has recently experienced an immense drop in value due to mounting debts. What remains to be resolved post-Covid-19 is who will cover the loss, and at what cost.

    Oliver Ressler’s recent video essay Carbon and Captivity, 2020, currently on view here and screening

  • Anna-Karin Rasmusson, Omsorgen (The Care, detail), 2020, digital video, mixed media.
    picks March 30, 2020

    Anna-Karin Rasmusson

    Entering an installation by Anna-Karin Rasmusson is like attending a healing ceremony for a broken present tense. Here, large pieces of cardboard offhandedly duck-taped onto floors and walls become a soft architecture for proto-domestic leisure. Drowned in red paint, or rather, in projections where paint flows, the packaging remains dry. From one projection to another flounder characters, often performed by Rasmussen herself, dressed in loose fitting full-body suits made of an off-white textile, which, much like the installation, is on the verge of disintegration. But it holds, despite the

  • Anders Sunna and Michiel Brouwer, 1634 (detail), 2019, collage, oil, acrylic, spray paint, wooden sledge, iron ore, steel, reindeer horns, ink-jet prints. Installation view. Photo: Hendik Zeitler.
    picks February 20, 2020

    “Every Leaf Is an Eye”

    Noah Piugattuk shrugs when the Canadian civil servant offers him money and Western education. Why would he need money, and why would he want his grandchildren to be educated by someone who does? In Zacharias Kunuk’s feature film One Day in the Life of Noah Piugattuk (2019), set in 1961, the white man’s insistent attempts to persuade the Innuit Piugattuk family to leave their homeland, Kapuivik, appear absurd. But the humor has a bitter taste—the film ends with archival footage of the protagonist’s forced relocation to a settlement instituted by the Canadian government.

    Around the corner, three

  • View of “Anne Haaning,” 2020, Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art. Photo: David Stjernholm.
    picks January 15, 2020

    Anne Haaning

    Today, the extraction of both narratives and material resources is deeply intertwined with a seemingly indefatigable drive toward technological development. In the Danish artist Anne Haaning’s multimedia installation Half Hidden, 2019, the false binary of surplus and dispossession melts into reflective matter that seems to be leaking out of two video channels and onto the dim gallery’s floor. The surface of a waterlogged quarry, a shiny enamel cover, a touch screen––all are mirrors for the contemporary dematerialization of colonization, as its physical remnants vaporize into the weaponized

  • View of “Taking matters into your own hands,” 2019. Photo: Lisa Requin.
    picks December 12, 2019

    “Taking matters into your own hands”

    Mint, a gallery dedicated to tracing art’s role in workers’ movements across generations and contexts, recently invited the Stockholm-based design historian Christina Zetterlund to curate “Taking matters into your own hands,” a show that looks at an overlooked history of glassmakers in Småland, a rural region in southern Sweden.

    In 1978, Sven Lindqvist’s blockbuster book Gräv där du står! (Dig Where You Stand!) incited Swedes to do just as the exhibition’s title dictates by investigating and researching their local contexts, namely their workplaces. As Sweden has a long tradition of study circles,