Viktor Rosdahl | egna bilder: ett sällsynt ljus

16 February - 25 March 2023

We are pleased to present Viktor Rodahl's first solo exhibition at the gallery titled "egna bilder: ett sällsynt ljus".


Viktor Rosdahl's work straddles the line between the personal and the political. He is known to many for his intricate and blistered works, spanning over motifs such as the public housing programs of the 1960s, political demonstrations, mazelike black-and-white urban environments, and rugged peaks. The last decade, Rosdahl has devoted his attention to less populated areas and a less obviously political world of motifs, which he nonetheless explores with the same ideocratic painterly curiosity and sense for stories within.


In the exhibition "egna bilder: ett sällsynt ljus", we are faced with snow-covered mountainscapes, depictions of deserted and somewhat ghostly hinterlands, and film-stills repeated in series. In a number of intimate works, the surfaces have been processed with heavy layers of epoxy and pigment. One of the works in the exhibition is painted on a piece of linen cloth that was formerly used by Rosdahl to wipe off his brushes – and is described by him as a kind of "accidental painting". There is nothing accidental about his motifs however, as they are rather based on years of research and a massive archive of images. Ephemeral impressions, experiences and memories all inform Rosdahl's works. The source of inspiration might (as the title of the exhibition suggests) be a seldom seen light, a faded photograph, or a looming cloud.


The point of departure in Rosdahl's process is deeply rooted in his own murky family history and interlaced with places that become charged with symbolic meanings. Even though he pays close attention to the depicted matter, he does not regard his works as documentary accounts of certain places. Conversely, he treats the reference image as a readymade that is used to tell his own different stories. The works are shape shifters between narration, resistance, critique and play. A pile of haybales, for example, becomes a mystery about hidden and forgotten places. And at the same time, they might just as well illustrate the political reality of growing divisions between urban and rural areas. As for the paintings depicting snowy mountainscapes, they might stun you one moment, only to evoke a sense of loss the next. It is as if the world is seen in a rearview mirror from an aircraft leaving this earth behind. In essence, it is the attraction towards the image and the wormholes of associations besides the obvious that makes Rosdahl want to dissect and portray it.


Viktor Rosdahl was born in Helsingborg in 1980. He lives and works in Malmö, Sweden. Rosdahl was educated at The Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm (2005) and at Malmö Art Academy (2002–2007). In 2009, he was awarded with the Maria Bonnier Dahlin Foundation Grant. The following year, Rosdahl was part of "Modernautställningen 2010" at Moderna Museet, Stockholm. Recent solo exhibitions include "Inferno" at Pumphuset Konsthall, Landskrona, and "Dunkelhet" at Galleri Cora Hillebrand, Gothenburg, both in 2022. In 2021, he had solo exhibitions at Galleri Moment, Ängelholm, and Galleri Arnstedt, Östra Karup. Previous solo and group exhibition venues include Ljungbergmuseet, Ljungby (2022, 2020 and 2018/19), Ystads konstmuseum (2019, 2017, 2011 and 2008), Bonniers konsthall, Stockholm (2016 and 2009), Moderna Museet, Stockholm/Malmö (2016 and 2010), Nordic Contemporary, Paris (2015), Frieze Focus, New York (2014), Konstakademien, Stockholm (2014 and 2007), The Armory Show, New York (2012), Röda Sten Konsthall, Gothenburg (2011), CAC – Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius (2010), and Dortmund Bodega, Oslo (2009). In 2011, he participated in the 6th Gothenburg Biennial of Contemporary Art (GIBCA), and in 2010, he participated in the 5th Liverpool Biennial with e-flux Time/Bank project. Rosdahl is represented in the collections of Moderna Museet, Helsingborgs museum, Malmö Konstmuseum, Public Art Agency Sweden, Göteborg Stad, Ståhl Collection, among others.
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