lund,-sweden

Miriam Bäckström, The Opposite of Me Is I, 2011, tapestry, 9' 6 1/8“ x 32' 10”. Installation view.

Miriam Bäckström

Lunds konsthall

Miriam Bäckström, The Opposite of Me Is I, 2011, tapestry, 9' 6 1/8“ x 32' 10”. Installation view.

A revelatory moment in Miriam Bäckström’s impressive retrospective “The Opposite of Me Is I” was her documentary-style video Rebecka, 2004, in which she shifts between interrogating and directing the actress Rebecka Hemse. Hemse is an accomplished performer with a beguiling range of subtle expressions; in this case, they are charged with enigmatic allure by the ambiguity of her character. But when is this actress not performing? Is she ever being herself? “If I consider fiction to be more authentic,” she wonders, “why leave it at all?” Moments later, Bäckström asks pointedly, “When are you most personal?” and Hemse answers without hesitation: “I’m most open when I’m playing open.” We get no closer to finding out who this woman is and, indeed, if you consider fiction to be more authentic, why would you leave it? This is the recurrent question posed by Bäckström’s art over the past

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