Six generations of Concretists, six artists who share an imagery focusing on the interplay of colours, surfaces and lines. “Relationships” is the title of a series of prints and paintings by Cajsa Holmstrand, but it also refers to the variety of relationships that exist and arise in this exhibition – within the works of art, between them, between generations, and between the work and viewer.
Concrete and Constructivist art emerged in the early 20th century, when artists such as Piet Mondrian, Kazimir Malevich and Sonia Delaunay-Terk moved from abstract motifs based on reality to creating works that were their own reality, free from any representational or symbolic intentions. Instead, the emphasis was on what was seen as the inherent value of art itself, the concrete: rhythm, movement, dynamic and balance. Using the basic elements of geometry – the rectangle, the square, the triangle and the circle – and the primary colours red, blue and yellow – these artists distanced themselves from any obvious associations to the natural world.
Concretism has held a strong position in Swedish modernism and has also inspired postmodern and contemporary takes. This exhibition consists of works spanning the period from after the Second World War to today. It also includes examples of art that is integrated with architecture or public places such as parcs, schools and hospitals.
The youngest of the group, Anna Nyberg, belongs to a different generation of postmodern artists who are trained to confront issues of colour and form, composition and spatiality in more experimental and deconstructive ways. Fields they explore include what an experience consists of, and how uncertainty can be portrayed. But Nyberg connects with earlier Concretists through her imagery and seeks to form new relationships.