Odlingen* bjuder in till Experiment för utopier
For English see below.
Tillsammans har en grupp med konstnärer, designers och forskare skapat en plats för experiment för utopier. Det vill säga en plats för frågor, perspektiv på och idéer om hur vi kan leva tillsammans. Platsen ges en gemensam klangbotten genom gruppens möten och delade processer. Sommaren 2018 gjordes en utställning på Ystad konstmuseum.
”Kanske är det så att man kommer att kunna beskriva denna utställning med att det är vi som grupp som är ett experiment för utopier. Att vi sammantaget speglar försöket att leva tillsammans.” (från ett av gruppens arbetssamtal).
Deltagare är Amit Sen, Anders Emilsson, Caroline Mårtensson & Patrik Bengtsson, Gunnel Pettersson, Gylleboverket med Jona Elfdahl, Etta Säfve & Shelley Sharr, Kristina Lindström & Åsa Ståhl, Madeleine Tunbjer & Clea van Berkel, Malin Lobell, Peter Ojstersek, Petra Lilja.
Utställningen är initierad och kuraterad av Gunnel Pettersson.
Utopin påminner oss om hur vi har det och hur vi relaterar till vår omvärld. Det finns en spänning mellan det välkända, det som är i förändring och förmågan att föreställa sig.
I experimentet är det möjligt att konfrontera denna spänning, leka, ta risker, kritisera och reflektera. Konsten erbjuder en komplexitet, och är till och med av kaotisk natur. Det kan användas som ett mindre rationellt sätt att möta det orealistiska, okända och förstå mänsklig samvaro i förändring.
Thinking about utopias reminds us of how we live today, and what kind of life we can have together. Our concept of utopia creates a tension between what is well known and what is in flux. Both inside and outside the Ystad Art Museum our audience can find gardens, films, photographs, sculptures, installations, interactions and performances.
Utopian Experiments is an exhibition of the striving for utopia rather than a presentation of finished utopian models. The show is a collaboration among several artists, designers and researchers who all came together during the development of the exhibition in 2017-18 to think and discuss a number of common references. The exciting development of that collaboration has now provided us with an exhibition that can at the very least engage our visitors in a new conversation. During the exhibition period there will be activities that test and develop some of the experiments in the show.
Amit Sen: Möbius Strip Poem
In our highly interdependent world it is increasingly difficult to predict the outcome of a specific action or intervention. And necessarily so since cause and effect often are interchangeable; it is impossible to say which came first. We are in a the-chicken-or-the-egg situation.
Sociologist Zygmunt Baumann points out that modernity (a fancy word for our present, technological era) is infused with fear. This fear is directly related to our inability to figure out what consequences our actions have. Not being in control is scary. Fear is a terrible feeling. No one can stand to be afraid for a very long period of time. We have to deal with it in some way. One way is to shut down our emotional response altogether. We numb ourselves. Either we over-eat, over- consume take drugs etc. or we get depressed. Another way to cope is to make the uncertain certain. An ideology that fully embraces this attitude is fascism. In a subtle way we are all fascists. We want to know how we ended up in the situation we are in and what to do next. But since our life is both complex and complicated it is really difficult to figure out how we got here and what to do. So we simplify – we become small fascists – and we blame. Either it’s the racists’ fault, or the immigrants. Or the current political climate is to blame, or it’s our lack of concern for the environment and hence the industrial revolution that is the root of our problems.
Depending on our choice of perspective we each have our favourite solution: better technology, closed borders, open borders, less private consumption, sustainable production or a new political system. To make things worse these “solutions” make way for ideologically based visions, or Utopias. And more often than not, these Utopias compete with each other.
Notable by his absence is the person who tries to stay with the discomfort. Contemplating what is, seeing and understanding these different perspectives and how they relate to each other is a nearly overwhelming task. Yet, it seems obvious that this is what needs to be done. The Möbius Strip Poem is a preliminarily sketch, an attempt to illustrate what kind of relationships constitutes our liquid modernity and the challenges that come with them
Anders Emilson has written poems based on the concept of utopia and engraved them into a table that stands outside the museum. His ideas about utopia have also provided the point of departure for the exhibition and the project group's conversations.
Caroline Mårtensson & Patrik Bengtsson:
Non Utopia: Manifesting a Vision, a Collage Based on a Process
A weaving of lichens and moss from old fruit trees that have been rejuvenation pruned.
A visionary sketch for a construction project: a hemp-lime greenhouse, laser cut into a pear wood plank.
1973-76 orthophoto from the Swedish mapping and land registration authority, an inventory of surviving fruit trees.
Photographs: grafted fruit trees and site-specific full-scale plan drawing.
Gunnel Pettersson: The Cultivation
This piece and the accompanying activity are conceived as a preparation, and are a study of what we are doing here in this place in relation to the surrounding world from a microperspective. It provides time for reflection and for formulating and clarifying the experiment and the concept of utopia.
Throughout the exhibition period, visitors are invited to practice making noodles with buckwheat flour. In the museum's workshop visitors will be able to prepare and taste them. A tablet on the wall shows a film clip of the cultivation of buckwheat and the making of the noodles. Behind a writing board covered in seeding calculations are packs of buckwheat stems. The design for the plaza includes a "field" of buckwheat.
Gylleboverket (Jona Elfdahl, Etta Säfve, Shelley Sharr): All is Forgiven (A Sacrificial Rite)
Gylleboverket is a group of artists and a platform for contemporary art and film that is based in a former center for reclaimed construction materials in Östra Vemmerlöv.
The group is led by the artists Etta Säfve and Jona Elfdahl. For this exhibition, the two have collaborated with the artist Shelley Sharr and this trio has created a piece that appeals not only to our senses of sight and hearing but to touch as well. Visitors can contribute to the scope of the work by carrying a bag of water from the reception and laying it in front of the piece's reflecting pool.
Kristina Lindström & Åsa Ståhl, the Un/Making Studio, in Collaboration with Petra Lilja: Un/Making the Plastic Straw
The point of departure for the Un/Making Studio is that design both makes and unmakes practices, materials, lives, relationships, aesthetics, dreams and utopias. The Un/Making Studio works with a double movement of making and not-making, in contrast to much other design and design research which focuses on the creation of something new.
In conjunction with the exhibition Utopian Experiments, the studio and Petra Lilja are together exploring the possibility of "un/making" a plastic straw. There have been many attempts lately to put an end to the plastic straw, while at the same time earlier versions seem to endure and come back in new constellations. What is interesting here is both what is done and what is not done in these new relationships.
Madeleine Tunbjer & Clea van Berkel:
Dictionary of Transition
Tunbjer and van Berkel have made a video projection with a soundtrack by Thomas Persson that depicts an abandoned industrial facility outside of Ystad. It was once used to produce syrup for a sugar factory. Now "The Syrup Line", as the artists call the facility, has become the object of their mapping of the place and its ecology.
Malin Lobell: We Are the Plan(ts), The Way a Plant Shares Itself with Us
In the plaza in front of the museum Malin Lobell has created a forest garden in one of the raised planter beds. Inside the museum we find the "portraits" she made of these plants using anthotype, a photographic method that utilizes an emulsion of plant pigment. Lobell has also made a portrait of herself using the same technique. Anthotypes require different exposure times depending on the plant used. In this case the artist has used various grasses and sweet cicely, and the exposure time was three or four hours in full sunlight. Pictures that are quickly developed in the light can also disappear quickly. Therefore Lobell has covered her anthotypes with embroidered fabric, which the visitor can lift to see the photographic picture behind.
Peter Ojstersek: Wildform Duft and The Search for Nagel's Odorant
Peter Ojstersek often works with plant material in his art. Outside the museum he has built a dome full of dahlias. The hope is that the dome will be able to intensify the flowers' subtle scent and thereby make the practically imperceptible perceptible. Inside the museum we are showing a film called The Search for Nagel's Odorant which deals with the search for the only dahlia in history that had a distinct scent. The film is produced in collaboration with Håkan Carlbrand.
Petra Lilja: Eternal Dystopia/Perishable Dreams, or Utopia Is Dead-Long Live Utopia!
Petra Lilja has created two banners, one of environmentally damaging plastic and the other of a biopolymer made from gluten she produced herself. Beneath the banners are examples of the products she used.
Translation: John Krause