Design, painting, architecture and art in general has thrived and been paramount in the European north for years and the importance of expression for the people of the Nordic countries can not be overstated. We want to acknowledge some of the artists from the north and their ways of expression. In this specific piece there will be a focus on exhibition art in particular, as well as contemporary art. The European north is of course known for artists like Edward Munch, Hilma af Klint, Tove Jansson etc, but there is a substantially  diverse and vital active modern art scene that is both inspiring and notably important in the Nordic countries today.

Ida Ekblad (Norway)

Blood Optics, Installation view, Museo Tamayo, Mexico City, MX 2019


She is represented by a number of galleries, including the very important Saatchi Gallery and now recently the Max Hetzler gallery, and has had exhibitions all around Europe. Her colorful works incorporate painting, sculpture, poetry, performance and film making. There is a sense of childish but intelligent neo expressionistic freedom in her works, and from a colorist perspective, one would say they exhibit a very complex palette. Ida Ekblad held her first German solo exhibition ”Diary of a madam” at the Kunsthaus Hamburg in 2017, a very anarchic exhibition that brought back motives and themes of popular culture that many would dismiss as outdated or tasteless, and made them effortlessly timeless, rejuvenated and attractive.

 


Olafur Eliasson (Iceland)

Weather Project, Turbine Hall, Tate Modern 2003


In 2003, Olafur Eliasson made the sun shine within the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern in London, with his fabled installation ”The Weather Project”. Situated at the center of the Turbine Hall, hung a gigantic sun like sphere made out of hundreds of vibrant, orange and red mono frequency lamps. From the gigant sun permeated a duotone light that spread throughout the hall. In this installation, Olafur also emulated clouds with a mist that floated throughout the 3,000 square meter space. Olafur has been a prominent in the art installation & sculpture world for quite some time and is at the forefront of Icelandic contemporary art. Recently, Olafur Eliasson had an installation at the Guggenheim museum in Bilbao.

 

Olafur Eliasson: Verklighetsmaskiner / Reality machines. Moderna Museet, Stockholm, 3.10 2015

 


Karin Mamma Andersson (Sweden)

Karin Mamma Andersson, About a girl, 2005 Courtesy of Magnus Karlsson, Stockholm; Stephen Friedman Gallery, London; and David Zwirner, New York © Karin Mamma Andersson / BUS 2007


In 2005 she was awarded the Carnegie Art Award, and in 2003 she represented Sweden at the Venice biennale with her dreamlike compositions. Karin appropriates images in her works, and she creates an eerie familiarity of confusion to her suggestive narratives. Even though her art has been exhibited and sold internationally, and even though she is an acclaimed artist for her original signum and style, she remains working and living in Stockholm, Sweden. In an interview with Execute Magazine, she talks about how her initial move from Luleå to Stockholm was a big enough step, considering that she had two sons while she was studying, moving abroad wasn’t an option.

Karin Mamma Andersson, Ni börjar ju alltid om II


Tal R (Denmark)

Tal R, Hüsker Dü (Do You Remember?)


Born in Tel Aviv to a danish mother and a Czech father, Tal Rosensweig is a contemporary and expressionistic artist with a long and stately portfolio and exhibition history. Tal moved to Denmark as a one year old, he studied at Billedskolen in Copenhagen from 1986 to 1988, followed by the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts from 1994 to 2000.His paintings have been exhibited all around the world and he is easily Denmarks most recognized and sought after painter as of now. Tal R has a recognizable sense of color and frankness and is known for his vibrant and original techniques. In some of the more recent paintings he has done, he uses a distemper technique, mixing rabbit-skin glue to emphasize the ”glowing and vibrating” aspect of pigment.  But his methodology is not limited to painting, Tal also works with prints, drawings, textiles and furniture.

Rauha Mäkilä (Finland)

Spoon Me Baby II, Rauha Mäkilä


The Finnish painter and artist Rauha Mäkilä has been influenced by pop culture, fashion and youth culture, something that is apparent and prominent in her paintings. The motives that are loud, sometimes festive and revelry, are very expressive and colorful. Rauha’s bold color choices entices one to explore her visual landscape and and travel further into her youthful wonderland. Rauha graduated from the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts in 2007, and has since then appeared in numerous art collections and exhibits all over the world, including the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas City (USA), and the Munch Gallery in New York.

These are only some of the many talented and prolific artists of the nordic countries, but some of our favourites nevertheless