HANS JÖRGEN JOHANSEN
20 FEBRUARY - 20 MARCH 2016
In his second solo exhibition at the gallery, Hans Jörgen Johansen envisions a world where financial institutions are left to their own devices and go to seed. The exhibition, titled The Colonizers, contains a series of photography and sculptures.
Stressing the cyclically speculative patterns in the financial world, Johansen's new work springs from tulip mania or tulipomania - an economic bubble arising in the Netherlands in the 1630s during which the trade of bulbs rapidly boomed, followed by a catastrophic collapse. The exhibition focuses on the emptiness when greed-driven frenzy suddenly implodes, leaving behind a silent vacuum of reflection and analysis.
The new series of photographs feature fictional landscapes, consisting of ground and sky, which seem realistic but cannot be linked to any existing site. Formed with financial symbols, the works appear as abstract landscapes endlessly tessellating into the horizon.
In scale 1:10, the sculptures consist of carefully constructed models of worn building barracks, a generic prototype that can be found over virtually the entire world. The modules symbolize temporary resting places for those who build- harbingers of new worlds to be colonized, modernized and urbanized.
Modern nods to memento mori round out the exhibition, with three mummified rats presented as museum objects, placed in reconstructions of their native surroundings, alongside a pink plastic heart beating with the aid of a small electric pneumatic pump.
Hans Jörgen Johansen (b. 1961) was born in Borgholm and lives and works in Stockholm. In 1992, he received an MFA from the Royal Art Academy in Stockholm. Previously, Johansen has been parts of solo and group shows at Landskrona Konsthall, Liljevalchs, Karlskrona Konsthall, Kristinehamns Konstmuseum, Kalmar Konstmuseum, Saltarvet Fiskebäckskil and Brändström & Stene. Additionally, Hans Jörgen Johansen has done public art for Stockholm City and the State Art Council - for example at the Psychiatry´s House in Uppsala and Stockholm Cruise Center, Frihamnen Stockholm. In the fall of 2012, Johansen was rewarded with the JCDecaux art prize The Art Break 2013 for his ability to evoke an imaginary world that challenges our contemplation.
TEXT av Bengt Olof Johansson >