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Pay Attention To the Counts

The spring degree exhibition at Konstfack in Stockholm, Pay Your Attention, is open now and runs through May 26. Here are some standout moments that caught our interest amid the numerous degree presentations on site at the vernissage.

Viola Florin

A presentation in the degree show that literally felt grand in command and air was that of Sunna Hansdóttir from the MA batch in Craft: Textiles. In fact, the entire room housing her presentation appeared in perfect aesthetical harmony, with the various artists lending themselves to each other with tangible dialgoues and parallels between their respective works. By far the best curated section on the premises. There is an interesting through and through overlap between textile and painting in Sunna's work stretching the confinements of each medium, that is worth taking note to and which duly seem to have caught the eyes of gallerist Jan Stene who exhibited Sunna’s work exhibited earlier this year in a group exhibition. Fredda Berg, in the BA batch of Ceramics and Glass, in the same room offered a presentation manifesting beautiful craftsmanship where the works connote to artifacts and the fetischization of the object, and interestingly brought kinships to mind with contemporary artists like Gustaf Nordenskiöld and art historical pioneers like Meret Oppenheim.

Sunna's and Fredda's work neighboured Frida Mörck Lundéns (MA Craft: Ceramics and Glass) glass presentation 'Subversive Softness' which relates to structures of confinement, with her taking an interest in acts and objects of resistance. She speaks of boundaries at once being restricting while as well essential for forming and defining the identity of a matter. The obvious quality of her presentation on site in many way can speak for itself and made for one of top three favourite moments on site.

The show also bore some real surprises in terms of spatial management, with several MA graduates in Fine Art exhibited in a basement passage area at Konstfack which likely easily will have appeared as a trade down at first but in reality seem to serve the students well, moving away from crammed and conjusted floors, opting instead for airy presentations without the interference of others, which is hard to come by at a show like this. One of the graduating artists whose work you can be sure that you will be seeing a lot more of in the future (and whose name has been mentioned on lips outside of school) is Leo Park in the MA in Fine Art batch. His string of works with scenarios hovering between the absurdly comical, surreal and perverted, seated against ”the backdrop of green screens”, places an interesting emphasis on the actions and gestures of his characters and stresses a relational quality between characters and the maker as a director.

While a background in documentary filmmaking, Ayedin Ronaghi’s (MA in Fine Art) presentaiton is one that alludes to textiles clothed in personal experiences and metaphoric significance. The Persian rugs from which his final execution and display departs, sees the revocation of a weaving process, the reversed process in essence...meticulously done, supposedly with tweezers, and by far one of the most distinctive presentations without omitting any aesthetical appeal, seen in a long time at this school. In Iran it is said families will gather routinely around the rugs for social moments like meals, while politics sometimes causes rifts and divides between members of the same family in this divisive society, which are forced below the surface during these ”gatherings”. His project of fragmentation is aimed partially to visualize this narrative.

An artwork, from any of the degree presentations on site, that could easily be picked apart as one of the staunch favourites works, standing on its own ground was one by BA grad in Textiles; Stina Rolf, bearing the "inscription" 4-ever.

Another one of our top 3 picks was Mattias Pettersson's 'Alien Worrior Princess" (note the intentional misspelling "Worrior" from the verb worry, instead of "Warrior"). Aggressive and violent shapes that bring notions of child play and toys to mind stand at the fore of this presentation which cleverly make use of levels of space, from the ground all the way way to position on a towering structure. The presentation is said to depart from the artist's recognition as an adult of an attraction of sort towards typical boyish iconography that evaded his as a child. Ultimately as the artist puts it forth himself; a longing to approach the boy or man he was not, but an approach all the same on his very own terms.

Our absolute top pick that felt SO accomplished and made for a moment of sheer art thrill was MA Craft: Ceramics and Glass graduate Viola Florin. She really slayed it. The slaying was all over the place, and it wasn't loud or brash, just perfectly crafted and tactful. Amazing the work of this emerging artist. Cannot wait to see her work in exhibitions outside of school in the future.


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