“With SEART — Sweden’s Emerging Art — we simply want to show the best young art made in Sweden,” says designer Margarita Bergfeldt Matiz. A track record of designs for NASA and world-touring exhibition architecture makes the Colombian designer a great example of how Sweden is increasingly becoming a leading platform for a growing number of international creatives. SEART is a group of five friends from four countries who have chosen the 14 best 2012 Master and Bachelor works from the art universities in Stockholm for a 1,000sqm pop-up touring exhibition (opening in the Swedish capital and then moving to Asia — track it at the website).
Graduation works chosen by people with a good eye — could this be a sound investment opportunity? “All the works are for sale directly by the artists, and of course these are artists who we believe have a future,” explains Matiz. “But our only criterion is that the works trigger us emotionally. To regard art as an investment can often spark a genuine interest in art. But the current political view that art should always be able to stand on its own feet is dangerous. The primary role of art is not to generate money. Art is about sharing questions, thoughts and inspiration.”
Here Billionaire.com selects six of the best young art talents out of Sweden, and comments on their SEART pieces:
Kristofer Hedberg, Untitled
Hedberg’s installation, made of gypsum Caesar masks and a wooden ladder, all sprayed in a gross Barbie-and-Ken skin colour, investigates ways to elevate yourself both as an idea and as a physical object. It is about the will to stay in a power position and the impossibility of perfect power. Might it also be a comment on vain attempts to try to dress yourself with the ready-made personalities that are neatly packaged and sold wherever you look? “That’s an interesting interpretation, I never thought of that,” says Hedberg. “And that is why I don’t want to explain my work too much, because it would be a shame to limit the personal experience of any art work.”
Kristofer Hedberg was born 1980 in Stockholm, Sweden.
Heyjoo Yang, Untitled
Heyjoo Yang’s art touches on performance — the live making of clay bowls. But these are not fired, thus they will crumble and become lumps of clay over time — a metaphor for the impermanent and cyclical nature of all things in this world. But, of course, they will not disappear as they can be shaped and reshaped again. “The bowl, the most common household object in Asia, is used to represent common objects, life forms and phenomena in this world. These bowls are fragile just as the end of a day and beginning of a night is a prelude to the coming of yet another day,” says Yang.
Heyjoo Yang was born in 1972 in Deagu, South Korea.
Supawan Sihapoompichit, ‘Happy Meal’
A former potter turned ceramicist, Sihapoompichit wants to question the consequences of modern eating habits with her takeaway containers made of ceramics. She is well aware that the question has been discussed before. “But the environmental problem doesn’t go away, and there must come more alternatives,” she says. “Perhaps we must completely change our eating habits? I am the type of person that understands through physical construction, and through this piece I have become aware that I am also part of the problem — hopefully we can come up with an alternative material to ceramic that consumes less energy. And of course I don’t have the solutions — I want to raise the question, hopefully we can come up with solutions together.”
Supawan Sihapoompichit was born in 1978 in Nakhornrajasima, Thailand.
Christofer Blixt, ‘Revolt’
'Revolt', an installation/sculpture/table, is a tribute to slowness made by Christofer Blixt. He is part of the on-going international movement transcending and dissolving borders between different disciplines of creation. He graduated as industrial designer, is now doing a master’s degree in ceramics and glass, but more than anything he is moving towards an undefined area without normative limits or dogmatic rules. “By being hard to define, you form unexpected associations, you force people to contextualise in new ways,” he argues. “With this work I also want to show the contrasts between slowness and speed, and question why speed is rewarded everywhere in society.”
Christofer Blixt was born 1983 in Lund, Sweden.
David Larsson, ‘My Dwelling Place’
Larsson’s installation revolves about storing and saving, but he shuns the word “collecting.” “Collecting is something specific, you collect something that is already defined as a category — and a good collection is probably also focused towards a specific subcategory: jazz records from a particular label or stamps from a particular country or art from a specific tradition,” he says. There’s none of that in ‘My Dwelling Place’ — it comes across as one giant, non-hierarchical lucky dip: yarn, keys, papers, glass objects, pieces of wood, books, typewriters, photos and matches to mention but a few of the objects. ”These objects are interesting precisely because they do not easily allow themselves to be locked into specific categories. The dreams of what this material might become are always a lot more fascinating and interesting that what the finished artwork can ever be.”
David Larsson was born in 1981 in Uppsala, Sweden.
Monika Strasser, ‘On Beauty’
Monika Strasser finds the notion of beauty interesting, because it is so defined. “There are so many expectations on how we should look, and so many women are being pressured and defined by how they look,” she says. Part of ‘On Beauty’ is made of blackened silver sticks. “Normally silver is beautiful, shiny and polished, I want to show the opposite side of silver, I want to to show that it can be beautiful in a different way,” Strasser adds. “Hopefully I will also remind people that we are surrounded by so much beauty that is normally not even considered by most people.”
Swiss citizen Strasser was born in 1976 in Kaiserslautern, Germany.