Stay Safe, Avoid Human Contact

Stay Safe, Avoid Human Contact


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This project consists of art pieces, text works and talks.


In exhibition


Works and texts from exhibitions and projects

My Home is my Castle


In this essay I will describe my project, My home is my castle. It consists of three paintings that are dealing with loneliness, self image and stereotypical female gender roles.

First I will describe my artistic practice and the project. Then I will dig into some of the theories and ideas that I built the project upon. After that I explain how the paintings relate to my personal life, as most of my practice is, and how the inspiration to this specific project emerged. I will also write about the painterly aspects of the pieces before I add the final thoughts on the project.

Artistic practice


My artistic practice contains a strong feminist political agenda. A big part of that is to try to understand my opponents, and to challenge my own beliefs by testing perspectives from both sides. It is an honest attempt to understand. While I am experiencing it I ask myself if that way of thinking could be a possible alternative for myself. In some cases, I have worked with standpoints that has been hard for me to undergo and I have had to create a performative character in order to be able to do it properly.

The artistic outcome of this process is a moment where I illustrate a fraction of my findings, to show what that way of life would lead me into in everyday situations.

In this project I did not use a character. Instead, I tried to show my own self as honest as I could. It is a study of vulnerability and ego as well as an observation of my own attempts at emotional escape.

The two women present


In this essay I will juxtaposition two historically different female coded stereotypical ways of life, taking place in the western world. 

The first one is the woman as a caretaker of others with roots in the past. This woman still exists today. In the text I will use her as an illustration of traditional values. A woman that will ”keep in her place”, which means staying out of society. Her world is her home, her aim is to please. A woman created by patriarchal structures.

The second woman is the contemporary young adult, who has grown up with a much bigger possibility of informing herself on whatever topics she wishes to and endless choices of communication. She has role models, both living and dead, who has lead lives outside of the narrow frames that women were given in the past. This woman has access to more information, more options approven by society and thus also bigger expectations for her own possibilities.

My exam project is theoretically combining both these roles, reflecting upon how they affect each other or can co-exist in the same contemporary mind as well as society.



The paintings


The three paintings in this project all have different color palettes. The portrait on the couch is painted in a mostly cold palette. The mood in the painting is marked by concrete walls and time that moves slow. I wanted to show a moment where desperation is present but action is not. The couch symbolizes honesty and confessions, even as it is a prominent part of a project about emotional distance. The couch is a nod to Freuds couch that revolutionized psychology, making his patients comfortable while sharing their traumas, but at the same time allowing the therapist and the patient to keep emotional distance as well, as they were no longer facing towards each other.

The next painting shows a naked body in a bed. I wanted to confront the sexualized gaze that a painted body can often provoke. In this context the nudity is in a situation of indifference. If nobody cares, why make an effort to look in any specific way? It is the stereotypical image of the pantless bachelor in front of the TV, taken one step further. The colors in this painting are warm. Not to show a cozy home but rather to distance it from the typical magazine look of a home in order/harmony.

The painting I mirrored the first two in, to complete the series, is the painting of the dishes. As the two portraits depicts emotion, this one shows a mindset. The glorifying of the dishes symbolizes both avoidance and distraction. To distract oneself from confronting ones surroundings one might use domestic shores as a shield. It creates a time-consumption approved by society, which provides a false sense of fulfillment due to achievement and efficiency. Keeping a tidy home also gives a sense of control of ones own life, which is absent in the portraits.



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My Home is my Castle #1

Oil on canvas

255 cm x 138 cm

2019

My Home is my Castle #2

Oil on canvas

233 cm x 178 cm

2019

My Home is my Castle #3

Oil on canvas

255 cm x 138 cm

2019

Historically, the female self portrait was seen as something very exclusive. Women in art was viewed as sublime creatures. As a woman took on being both the painter and the model, she became art itself.

Today, portraits has turned into selfies as a medium where foremost women claim their space. Although, it has also become a practice that is frowned upon. The more selfies one posts on social media, the bigger the risks are to be seen as a narcissist.

In my project, I turned the camera on myself, painted big self portraits, combining the two ideas into something maybe even more narcissistic, framing them nicely and exhibiting them in a museum.



Colors and symbols


I have used elements of desire in all three images. In the first one, the deep red color is representing lust and cravings, as the gaze out of the room shows that she knows it’s not to be found nearby. Red is also used in the third painting, the one in the bedroom. The references to desire may be more literal in that one, having a naked body placed on a bed. But the subject is looking away. Her portrait lacks enough detail to gain contact with. No matter how close you go, you won’t get closer to her.

In the second painting with the dishes, there is no red but there is a phallic symbol in the middle. I wanted to be blunt, illustrating how silly one can feel when ones desires are exposed. In my performances I use humor and vulnerability side by side, and I am trying to translate it into my painting practice as well. But I also wanted to show how men are central even in this female-coded everyday that I depict in this project, concealing a penis-like symbol in the painting and yet, placing it in the center of the painting.

Green is also the color of approval, which historically has been crucial for women. Today, patriarchy struggles because it’s approval is not as important any more. Instead, we see women breaking free from it. The system that is built around mens approval is reacting by for example restraining abortion rights and other ways to punish those who fights against the system that has been built by men, for men.

Continuing on the color green: Even if green means ”go” or ”ok”, dreaming about green is a sign that something is wrong. Green is a deceptive color, just like domestic chores is a deceptive form of labour. It shows a way to pass time, to distract oneself and be a part of a collective society where we all keep order in our homes as a part of the norm. This painting is a pat on the back, showing that I do it too, I control my surroundings. It screams that I am part of the normal everyday that we are all expected to share. But it also hints to domestic chores like it is a special occasion. As if one can’t really expect even me with my blown up narcissistic ego to do the dishes like the rest of society. 

While the sublime woman painters of the past painted still lifes of their best silver, I find it enough to document that my Ikea glasses are clean.

By showing clean dishes stacked to dry I want to parade myself as a good girl for doing the dishes. Blowing it up to huge proportions shows how big this shore is in my life, as well as how much I value the fact that I performed it. 

Still, only using one color in sketch-like brushstrokes the beholder has the right to ask if this is an ironic take on domestic labour. There has been many still life-paintings of clean kitchen utilities in the history of art, often to reflect upon class or to show off wealth with beautiful, shiny surfaces and expensive materials used in the kitchen inventory. In my painting I aim for a bare surface executed in an aquarelle-like manner because the canvas is the only light seen through the green paint, no shine or glory added.

But is it ironic? While loneliness increases, one might deepen it by seizing to seek a solution. As the painting title My home is my castle suggests, indulging in domestic shores can be a way to create a false sense of fulfillment in ones life, by the simple reason that the day is filled. Time has passed and something seen as good and effective in the eyes of the fostering society has been done. And if the practitioner of this shore is a woman, she can add the sense of satisfaction knowing that she has performed not only a task but also a role in which she was casted by the society she feels left out of because of the loneliness. This sense of doing something right will make you believe that you are on a path back into a social context even if everything you did was, in fact, insignificant to others.

The time consumption continued, from doing the dishes to painting them. It grew into a big sketch that I filled with shadows. I left the best parts of the sketch visible. The technique is not meant to appropriate high art. I left it all behind to reclaim for myself the old way I drew before I learned how to treat the surfaces in the right way. It is a phone doodle that grew too large because no one was on the other side of the line.



Staring back into the male gaze


The male gaze has dominated and shaped painting through history. Especially the naked female body has been shown to please, or to show off the painters own disrespect for the modest mind.

As a meta-perspective, I aim to, from my position as a female artist, stare back at the male gaze as it hits my pieces.

I have included a naked self-portrait in my series at Bildmuseet. It has borrowed several significant elements from art history, and becomes in that way partially stereotypical. It can be read as a depiction of a passive, naked woman in a bed, waiting for something or someone to happen. In many ways, this could be meant to please. But this woman is also visibly bored and unhappy. It is somehow demonstrating to show a lonely woman rather spending a night in front of the TV than seeking out company. Her eyes are turned away from the viewer. In the same way as people turn their eyes down on the bus to show that they want to be left alone it is up to the beholder to understand that they are not welcome in this scene.

The juxtaposition of the independence and the nudity in this image leads me to the debate that is lead in social media at the moment, regarding wether or not posting nude selfies is empowering or not. On one hand, the depicted person is in power of her own exposure and claims her space. On the other hand, how can she be sure that she is executing her own free will and not something that patriarchy has indoctrinated her to believe that she wants? Is it just a scam, leading her to believe that she is acting out of free will and empowering herself when she is in fact just staying in her place as a woman in a patriarchal society?

As a continuation of that, how can I be sure that I am protesting something with this piece when the line between protest and compliance is so very thin? For my questioning to function, parts of my pieces has to follow a line of action that I don’t agree with. But as long as there is a question visible somewhere in each piece I believe there is an element of realization to be gained.



The elevated narcissist


Historically, the female self portrait was seen as something very exclusive. In the 1800’s, art collectors had waiting lists for buying them from selected artists. Women as motifs in art were viewed as sublime creatures. But when taking on both roles, the artist and the model, she entered an exclusive crowd. ”The woman artist was seen as a natures wonder, and as being both the artist and the motif she symbolized art itself- La pittura.”

Today, portraits has turned into selfies which is medium where foremost women claim their space. Although, it has also become a practice that is frowned upon. The more selfies one posts on social media, the bigger the risks are to be seen as a narcissist. In the same way as jobs dominated by women are being paid less and underestimated in severity and value, I wonder if the selfie is ridiculed because it is a platform where women exist on their own terms.



The importance of a window


Free translation of page 21 from Because the days are evil by Anne Karin Elstad:


”Earlier on, when she first moved here, the zink was placed in the darkest corner of the kitchen. She had only the wall to look at during the countless hours she spent cooking and doing the dishes. But she recalls it also being a sort of comfort. Turning her back towards everything unaccustomed. The parents in law. Tore. His younger siblings, who still lived at home. Neighbors peaking in, sitting there, measuring her with their eyes, the young wife. She felt their gaze on her back. Only the wall to throw her eyes and thoughts at, and then there was the baby, living and growing inside of her.

When they got further along and modernized the house, she made sure her workspace and the zink was placed in front of the windows towards the fjord. For grey days, for clear ones, but room for thoughts and gazes. For dreams and longing as well.”


This scene connects to an idea that Rousseau expressed in Emile, or Education. In order for a woman to live a happy life, she must be taught from a young age to be content with a life lived inside of the house. This way of life is often referred to as the small life in Swedish, and it means living the typical life of a housewife. Rousseau wrote this text in the context of all women being supposed to commit their lives to being wives and mothers.

In the quote from the book about the housewife Hildegunn, the reader follows her through an observation of her own struggle to reach acceptance of how her life turned out. She was not taught to settle for the small life. Getting a window for herself to watch the outside world through symbolizes her coming to peace with her inflicted gender role; committing to the illusion of being born to go through life as a spectator, focusing on others rather than herself. She will not fulfill her dreams. The cruelty in this situation, following Rousseaus thoughts, is that she knew she had the freedom to create those dreams in the first place. Had she not had dreams about more in life, she would have been happy.

Today, the small life is still a situation that many women commit to. It is no longer expected in the same way in western society, but it is also not unheard of. The economical system is still designed for women to be able to spend more time in the home than men. For example during parental leave, it is economically beneficial for a family if the woman stays at home for a majority of the parental leave even in an equality-oriented country like Sweden, because of the pay gap between men and women.


My home is my castle #1


The first painting was originally inspired by a feeling of loneliness and desperation. The protagonist is looking out the window, watching the clouds outside. There is no movement in the painting interior, the only action is outside of her reach. Like Hildegunn, she has chosen not to act upon it, but to accept it. In the same way as in the book by Elstad in correspondence with Rousseaus idea, what makes the situation unbearable for the two depicted women is the awareness of their dreams, maybe even expectations.


My home is my castle #2


In the second painting of my series My home is my castle there is no window and the only light source is the fluorescent lamp above the zink. Into the painting, beyond the dishes, there is no view of the outside world. Instead, there are more dishes. The blank tiles are reflecting the domestic labour that is already done.

If the window represents the acceptance to a historically used gender role, the absence of it stands for if not fighting against it, at lest being aware of it.

Knowledge is power. A very literal illustration of that is that women in the past were told that their uterus would shrink and they would become unable to conceive a child if they read books. By scaring women away from inspiration and dreams, pitting possession of knowledge against being a mother, Rousseaus ideas about showing women mercy by not allowing them to dream big were in a way followed. Making women choose, just like Hildegunn had to. She couldn’t do what many women do today; combining the two.


My home is my castle #3


In the third painting there are domestic surroundings without windows, but there is a TV. All attempts to work are absent. There is just rest, or maybe apathy, but the TV serves as a window towards the world. But the beholder knows that it is not a real window, and maybe she knows it too.



Narcissistic tendencies


Loneliness is a feeling that I originally thought of as a humble event, until I experienced it myself. I learned that as my social surroundings shrunk, my ego grew accordingly. As I had the same amount of love to share as before, but less people outside of me to project it on, a growing percentage was projected onto myself. These narcissistic tendencies emerged at the same time as a loneliness-infused insecurity, which made me both question and overestimate my worth in a bigger social context.

I have connected that combined questioning and overestimation of one selfs importance to the selfie culture amongst women of my own generation and younger. Research shows that there is a strong connection between the posting of digital self-portraits on social media and ones own perception of self worth. It creates a loop where the main components are insecurity, selfies posted on social media and confirmation.

In a study made at the University of Toronto they found that beholders of published selfies tend to think of the portrayed person as a narcissist more often in selfies than other pictures.

By not just publishing my selfies, but transforming them into expensive art pieces and exhibiting them in a museum instead of just posting them on social media, one might argue that I am showing the strongest narcissistic signs of them all.

But I want to discuss the fact that women are often ridiculed for this, for taking themselves seriously. In a world where we are taught that our looks are important it becomes part of our personal branding. I say we ought to show it, if not to show off ourselves, then to ask for a broader context to exist in. If it provokes society that young women take their looks seriously, society should give them more options. At this moment, looks are presented to women as our context and they can either accept it and create their own version or they can take a stand against it. Those are the alternatives.

Social media is a platform that everyone have access to in the western world. It is new and women have claimed their space in it. A big difference from other older contexts are that here women did it from the beginning. There seems to be something very provocative about a young woman entering a scene and taking up space with the mere content of herself. Some might say that it shows insecurity to seek confirmation that way. Others might claim that it is the utter form of confidence.

I started painting my selfies in exclusive materials and forced the art world to view them. I feel a mix of power and insecurity as I do this, because it is not entirely ironic or for the sake of the discussion. I also think these are pieces showing important parts of a regular everyday life and I think that they are worth showing.

In context to the coveted 1800’s portraits, these insecurities are truly modern.



Concept and methods


In 2013 I started working with how loneliness affects the ego. I always thought of it as a humble state of mind until I experienced it myself. As my world shrunk, my ego grew bigger and I started to think about myself as someone very special to the whole world. These portraits are a way to mirror that self image and reflect upon what loneliness can do to a person.


I have found that in my practice there are two ways, with sub-categories, to handle my topics.


The first way is Dealing with it.


Artistic methods:

Discussion

Depiction

Demonstration


The second way is Avoiding it.


Artistic methods:

Denial

Distraction

Deception


Notice that the artistic methods are the same methods as one would choose between as an individual. The Dealing with it-methods are the same as used in schools. The Avoiding it-methods are the same as used by institutions, capitalists, news medias and governments.

In feminism there is an earnest use of the first method to make the use of the second method visible. Especially women are discussing in separate forums and teaching each others to recognize the second method in action.



Giving up


My artistic practice is strongly based upon my own personal life. Therefore the two of them are linked and often change or stagnate depending on each other. In this case, I had a rough personal year. Certain aspects of my personal life, combined with stress and self-neglect lead to temporary unhappiness and shy of a year of loneliness. In combination with having a heavy artistic blockage, I started giving up on the majority of my personal life.

The artistic blockage came from a big political change. My practice had since several years back been about protesting the patriarchy, discussing women's struggle and injustice. I was hoping that my sharing of personal experiences would be part of a future feminist revolution.

Ironically, MeToo struck me down. It was the revolution I had been working for, it just came earlier than I had anticipated. Suddenly my demonstrative performance practice was not needed for that purpose any more. When a practice is based upon current situations, it has to change when progress happens.

So the situation I was in when starting the masters project was, to sum it up: I was lonely, feeling left out of previous social contexts and feeling currently superfluous as an artist.

The method I chose to work with in this project was Depiction.

I realized that artistically I had not given up, but that was the only part that was still actively dealing with the loneliness. So artistically, I chose depiction as a way to deal with the fact that the rest of me had given into Distraction.

The primary distraction I devoted myself to was household chores. The stress gave me control issues, and my reaction to that was to stay home as much as I could and keep my home clear and under control.

This matches well with descriptions from depressed people describing the smallest tasks of their everyday life taking over, or being hard to perform. In my case, the struggle to keep everything tidy was overwhelming. At the same time as it took up all my time, serving as the distraction I needed, it also made me feel insufficient, because it is a task one can never complete.

Domestic labour never ends.



Paint yourself happy


My mother once said to me: Paint yourself happy.

She also, more recently, told me how she is always making sure she is happy because you can depend on no one else to do it for you. In the long run, we are all alone.

When I applied to an artistic bachelor education for the third time, I was in a crisis. I had a year off from school since I got rejected last time, and I had no full time job in order to dedicate all my time to apply for art schools. I was in an unhealthy relationship living far away from friends and family. I was also trying to lose weight that I gained due to stress during the previous years application times.

I was alone all the time. I spent a lot of time walking the same route in our backyard woods, talking to myself. I have endless recordings om my thoughts and inner conflicts from that time. I used them in the art work that finally got me in to school and has never listened to them since.


When you spend all that time alone, your ego gets weird. All you have is yourself, ergo all that matters is you. I became very self centered. Which is ironic, since I have always thought of loneliness as a humble state of mind where all you want to do is to be generous to others. And that the opposite, shallowness and self-absorption, is due to a surplus of available people who cares about you.

I thought it would be a once in a lifetime-experience. I also thought I would recognize that kind of ego-changing loneliness again.

But it wasnt.

I didn’t.



Einar Granum Kunstfagskole, Oslo, 2012


I was struggling with a still life. Fruit on draped textiles, a classical motif. I was frustrated and did not know how to get out of it. My teacher at the time did the round and stopped to watch me for a while. He then said:

”Maybe you need to get a little angry.”

I got my anger out, and it worked. I worked in a furious rage until the end of the day. As I left the classroom, I started applying the anger to whatever associations I came across. I ended up being angry for weeks.

In the end, although anger is a very useful part of my practice, this was the wrong way to apply it. I do not paint well through anger.

Five years later, the lonely summer of 2018, I realized he was right about the method. It was the emotion that was wrong. I did not need to be angry, just desperate.



Umeå Art Academy, 2018


This summer I decided to stay in Umeå to work and focus on my art. Umeå is a city that people tend to leave in the summer, and one by one I saw my friends leave town. I tried not to feel like it was me they left. Instead, I threw myself into production and my paid job. And I thought it went fine. But after a few weeks I acknowledged the apathy-like state I was in. My social world had narrowed down drastically and I did not want anyone coming back. I had a fear of losing control of everything when they did. For weeks and weeks I felt like that. It was a long summer. Almost four months. That’s plenty of time to go nuts.

But when a careful stream of known faces slowly started re-appearing, a brutal longing for my closest ones started to ravel in my body. One day I came to school and I felt a familiar smell in the elevator. The way someones perfume can linger in the air a few minutes after they leave. This was a smell that I recognized from hugs and borrowed jackets. I was thrilled when I exited the elevator on our floor. But the studio door was locked. I knocked on it. An empty backpack sat outside on the floor. Had it been there before? I knocked again. When nobody reacted on the inside I went in with the key I had used to water the flowers inside as a favor. The familiar smell greeted me. But the plants were dry since the last time I’d been there. The computer sat on the same spot as it had done all summer and the mold in the forgotten coffee cup was as alive as ever.

I think that was the moment I lost control.

I went into my own studio, not knowing what to do. I tried to stop my thoughts from running like a pack of wild horses against the inside of my skull. I tried to ignore the voice repeating ”They’re not back, they’re not coming back” in my head. I lay down on the couch and tried to relax. It was impossible. I put my phone in front of me and took a picture. Watched it to evaluate the state I was in. Clear desperation looked back at me.

This is also where the elevated narcissist comes in. Because at this point, there is also a conscious choice present, a choice to admire oneself while experiencing an intensely absorbing feeling. A desire to show oneself in a dramatic moment.

I printed the picture and drew a sketch. I rather liked it. I had a big roll of canvas that I had been to careful to use any of. I measured the sketch, did some division and cut off two and a half metres of the canvas. I didn’t care about underpaintings, pride or theory. I got a broom shaft from somewhere in school, taped a brush to it and started painting. A big portrait emerged. By the third night I worked on it, I painted legs in jeans curled up on the couch. I used blue for the color, white for the light, red and yellow to make it believable and burnt umber to tie it down. It was not as controlled as my painting usually is. I painted fast and passionate because nothing else could give me anything at all at the moment. I tried to paint myself happy.

Suddenly I realized that I had discovered how to paint in a way I had been trying to reach for a long time. At least four years I had tried to unravel the secret behind this technique. The consistency was creamy, the contrasts were big and the brush strokes confident. While aware of it I was afraid it would slip away from me. But it didn’t. By the end of the night I was euphoric. I painted myself ecstatic that night.

Then everyday life got to me and I needed to work longer days at my day job. I stopped coming to the studio after work because I was too tired and didn’t want to ruin what I had accomplished so far.

One week later I finally came back. I couldn’t get into it again. I sat down on the couch, staring at the painting of myself laying on it. Curled up the same way as in the painting, as in the desperation, I fell asleep and slept for hours. I didn’t know what to do with it. I had come so far that I could see the end result and I had no context to put it in.

When I woke up I ate the meal I brought. Talked to the few people that were back in town. Went for a walk. Bought a big bag of candy and ate fast food while trying not to look at the painting. Just stayed in its presence and got used to the studio again.



A new way to paint


I wanted to find a new way to paint. In many of my previous attempts I got stuck or bored halfway. I decided to paint faster. To keep up the pace I would have to paint more intuitive and accept that every stroke might not be thought through. What I gained was more individuality in each painting. They also got thicker since I in some cases painted over mistakes and changes without waiting for the paint to dry. The biggest change was that I finally, after years of trying (while carefully painting) I suddenly achieved a creamy expression.

I keep a palette with few but carefully considered colors for each painting. I removed some of my usual choices and replaced them with some for me unexplored colors to keep me from falling back into my comfort zone.

The play of light becomes important in the paintings. It is an outside actor that partakes in the scenes we build for ourselves with walls, furniture and other items we give value.

Coming from a background heavily infused by printing, I have used almost monochrome color fields in the paintings as well.

A part of this, for me, new and more impulsive way of painting I wanted to explore the visible stroke. As well as being a visual effect, the stroke is also a trace of the artist and their actions. I have always enjoyed traces of the process being visible in the result. I recently realized that it can be achieved this simple. I want these paintings to be both the result and the process, where the process shows and is only cut off by its own completion.

In the process of exploring the stroke and the light I have looked at Sara-Vide Ericsons paintings. Many of her paintings show delicate objects. The sun shining through wet fabrics, sharp contrasts between light and shadow with a crispy feel to it. Some of the images are almost picture perfect, and yet made by big, expressive brushstrokes, always staying solidary to the medium. This is a way to fuse the process and the result. It shows the work and its ways.

Edward Hoppers way of depicting light as big fields in the same color is also something that I keep coming back to. It reminds me of the simplicity generally seen in classical comics, where there is usually no more than two shades of the same color used to illustrate light and shadows.

To still create a coherence in the colors used, beyond the sparse palette, I studied how Geir Yttervik uses discrete strokes of color in the book Tause vitner. He picks up color from different parts of the surface to break up the color fields and connect them to each other.



Conclusion


The theory and the material development that I have written about in this essay is, like the paintings itself, something that can be continued until it is cut off by its own completion. But the political fight against injustice and inequality will continue, and influence personal lives in perhaps unexpected ways. As will the overwhelming feeling of loneliness from time to time, based upon the shifting relations one will experience while being a part of a human society. 


So in the end…


…There is no new beginning, but a continuation.



Sources


  1. Hamish MacPherson, Behind Freud’s Couch, Still Life, 2018
    https://stillifemag.org/Behind-Freud-s-Couch
  2. Cavalli-Björkman, Görel, Karlsson, Eva-Lena, Nationalmuseum, Ansikte mot ansikte : porträtt från fem sekel, Stockholm : Nationalmuseum : Atlantis. Nationalmusei utställningskatalog 626 uppl. 2001
  3. Cavalli-Björkman, Görel, Karlsson, Eva-Lena, Nationalmuseum, Ansikte mot ansikte : porträtt från fem sekel, Stockholm : Nationalmuseum : Atlantis. Nationalmusei utställningskatalog 626 uppl. 2001
  4. Elstad, Anne Karin, For dagene er onde (Eng: Because the days are evil), Aschehoug, 1985
  5. Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, Emile, or Education, 1762. Translated by Barbara Foxley, M.A. London & Toronto: J.M. Dent and Sons, 1921; New York: E.P. Dutton, 1921
  6. Published by SCB Statistics Sweden, Population and Economic Welfare, Women and men in Sweden. Facts and figures 2018
    https://www.scb.se/contentassets/4550eaae793b46309da2aad796972cca/le0201_2017b18_br_x10br1801eng.pdf
  7. Daniel E. Re, Sylvia A. Wang, Joyce C. He, and Nicholas O. Rule, Selfie Indulgence: Self-Favoring Biases in Perceptions of Selfies, Social Psychological and Personality Science, Vol. 7(6), 2016
    https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/2211/5daa2a24f386be34a5dd7494e23a6bc4826b.pdf
  8. Erikson, Sara-Vide, official webpage
    http://www.saravide.se
  9. Souter, Gerry, Edward Hopper: Light and Dark (Temporis Collection), Parkstone Press, 2007
  10. Yttervik, Geir, Eggen, Torgrim, Tause vitner (Eng. Silent Witness), Conflux, 2013

Pam

Min praktik handlar om att förmedla samhällskritik i känslobaserad form. Jag har utvecklat en karaktär som hanterar negativa händelser med positivitet. Dels handlar det för mig om att se vem av oss, Pam eller jag, som har det mest konstruktiva tillvägagångssättet, om ens någon av oss har ett.

Genom Pam utforskar jag personlighetsdrag som jag själv inte värdesätter, men som jag som kvinna känner en önskan från delar av omvärlden att jag ska uttrycka. Det är ett experiment för att se vilket beteende som fungerar bäst.

Det är också ett sätt att hantera intryck och erfarenheter. 

Jag använder dagens populärkultur och sociala medier som referenser för att bestämma hur hon ska prata, klä sig och föra sig.


I min praktik blandar jag samhällskritik med min egen känslovärld för att belysa hur de två påverkar varandra. Jag använder referenser från dagens populärkultur och sociala medier för att bestämma mitt konstnärliga uttryckssätt och låter mig påverkas av både språkliga och ickeverbala uttryck jag stöter på i vardagen. Jag jobbar mycket med den kvinnliga könsrollen och reflekterar över vilka uttryck som är gjorda för att träffa mig och ser vilka stämningar och känslor jag kan skapa beroende på hur jag återger dem. En stor del av min praktik går ut på att definiera mina egna ståndpunkter för att sedan försöka ta reda på hur motsatserna ser ut och försöka förstå dem. Ibland innebär det arbetet även att återge uttryck och åsikter som jag själv inte står för för att förstå dem, så nära inifrån det går att komma från ett utanförperspektiv.



Om ensomhet


Utstillingstekst for Galleri Zink

2020


Det hele begynte med oppvask. Livet er vanskelig å ta tak i når du alltid må vaske opp. Husarbeid er et eviglangt Sisyfos-oppdrag og av en eller annen grunn trumfer det ofte andre oppgaver. Mange jeg har snakket med om oppvaskmaleriene mine har opplevd at i vanskelige perioder er det hverdagslige husarbeidet det som føles mest uoverkommelig. Andre mener at når du mister kontrollen over viktige ting blir hjemmet noe du kan kontrollere.

Et perfekt hjem tyder på at du er en fungerende del av samfunnet. Å kaste seg hodestups inn i en perfeksjonisme av sine egne omgivelser er en solid distraksjon fra det som går galt. Et sosialt liv på vei utfor, for eksempel. Oppvask er en ypperlig måte å distrahere seg selv fra sin egen ensomhet. Du er så opptatt at du ikke har tid til å opprettholde omgangen med andre mennesker uansett. Du kan late som at du ikke merker at det ikke fungerer, samtidig som du setter et godt eksempel med de velholdte omgivelsene dine. Er du heldig merker du ikke selv engang at du bruker alle kreftene dine på selvbedrag. Ingen andre vil se det.

Malt etter bilder fra profesjonelle interiøreksempler handler sofaserien om illusjonen av indre harmoni. Sofaen er ikke bare et møbel. Den er et verktøy for avslapping og et symbol for en god tilværelse. Men takket være Freud er den også en institusjon for selvforbedring. Når du legger deg på sofaen handler detikke bare om avslapping, men også om å arbeide med sin egen mentale og energimessige balanse. Den står der så innbydende og tilbyr deg ro, samtidig som den viser til en forventning at du skal stå opp fra den som et bedre menneske.

Du kan unngå å konfrontere kravet på å bli den beste versjonen av deg selv. Omverden tilbyr så gjerne en strøm av hjernestimulanse for å overdøyve din egen tankestrøm.

Men så befinner du deg på et kjøpesentertoalett eller besøker badet i et annet hjem og plutselig blir det stille, du kan høre dine egne tanker. Etter konstant påfyll av annet er de egne tankene overveldigende.

Skogen er et sted som gir en balanse av selvkonfrontasjon og en tilstedeværende verden. Naturen er nådeløs. Den har ingen agenda og tar ikke hensyn til noe så lite som et menneske. Derfor er det mulig som individ å være neutral i skogen, selv om mennesket ikke forholder seg neutralt til naturen. Å bare være der uten å stilles i kontekst til noe annet. Samtidig som skogen eksisterer uavhengig av hva du synes om den er du alltid velkommen dit. La tankene vandre eller distraheres av dramatikken som foregår i det vi har en sterkere kobling til enn vi kanskje forstår. Den dømmer ikke deg som ikke passer inn i det sosiale samfunnet, eller har blitt uvenn med alle du kjenner. Med den vil heller ikke gi deg en klapp på skulderen selv om du vasket opp før du gikk ut.