Stockholm Art Week is in full flow, and one of the highlights of that is the Supermarket Art Fair. The art fair brings together artists from all over the world in a hall crammed with fascinating exhibitions and artworks. Newly relocated to Slakthusetområdet, we popped down to this year’s edition to grab some photos and talk to some of the artists exhibiting their work.
So what gallery are you from?
Jason: We’re from SAW Gallery, which is an artist-run centre in Ottawa, Canada. SAW is an artist-run centre, that was created by a collective of artists back in 1973, so it’s 45 years old now, and we’re currently in transformation to open a new 15,000 square foot facility, and it’ll include gallery spaces, concert halls/ nightclub for multi-disciplinary presentations, and then what we’re calling the Nordic Lab, which will be a research space for artists from circumpolar nations, including Sweden. Imagine it as a three-way exchange between artists from Canada’s north, who are primarily Inuit, coming to Ottawa to work on projects and then going to Sweden or Greenland for residencies or exhibitions, and the same in return, artists from Scandinavia coming to Ottawa.
What have you brought with you here?
Jason: Here is an exhibition we’ve entitled Public Disturbance: Politics And Protest in Contemporary Indigenous Art From Canada, and it includes the work of three artists, Barry Ace who is here in person, Meryl McMaster, a younger artist that’s making waves internationally, and Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun, a senior artist in Canda’s art scene.
Barry, tell us a bit about your exhibition.
Barry: Well, I’m a senior indigenous artist, Anishinaabe, from Manitoulin Island. I started out working in artist-run centres in Ottawa, and my work deals with the confluence between the historical and the contemporary. I look at settler politics and the impact on Anishinaabe culture and territories. The work that I created for this exhibition deals with the impact of Residential School, which was a forced removal of my family members, my father, my grandmother, my aunts and uncles to be interned in religious-run schools, which has now become a subject in the Canadian press where people have come forward and spoken about the sexual abuse and eradication of language and culture which took place in these institutions. The government of Canada is trying to reconcile with families who are survivors of these schools, and the work that I’m proposing talks about the experiences that my father and my great aunt had in the Residential School, and I entitled the work ‘How Can You Expect Me To Reconcile When I Know The Truth.
Pracownia Portretu – Łódź
What gallery are you from?
Maciej: We are from Pracownia Portretu, which can be translated as Portrait Studio Gallery, which we established four and half years ago. When we started it was my studio, I’m a painter, then we changed our main topic into becoming a gallery. We invite artists from different parts of the world to have short residencies, for a week or two, and those exhibitions became an exhibition in our gallery. It’s in a nice place in Łódź, and old factory complex, our gallery is located in an old workers house.
And tell use about the exhibition you’ve brought here.
Maciej: This is an exhibition of the works of the artists who have exhibited in our gallery. It’s inspired by new technologies, like the CERN Large Hadron Collidor in Geneva. The idea is that some particles when we have the instruments to detect them, and we cannot be sure if they really exist or not. This is the same with our sculptures, you have to be aware that they are there and use an instrument to see them.
Kasia: You can only see them through the special code, which was designed for this exhibition [using an app].
Maciej: It’s super comfortable to travel with this exhibition because we don’t have too much to carry around, and we can show many artists at the same time.
Dom Gruzchika – Perm
Which gallery are you guys from?
We are from the centre of the Russia, Perm. We have an art laboratory, Dom Gruzchika – Porter House, and with this laboratory we made a lot of interesting things, like stickers. We always are interesting in doing unusual things, not boring things.
What have you brought here?
My friend and I watched the movie Suicide Squad. And I made some works from that Harley Quinn was one picture, this one is Margot Robbie. This (Hubcap) I found in St Petersburg, near the gas station. I thought ‘nobody needs this’ and I took it. It reminds me of DeLoreans from the movie Back To The Future. We also listen to music, there’s Snoop Dog in this piece. Here’s one with Robocop, I made a non-killer Robocop, instead I made a smoker Robocop.