MFA1 at Galleri Alva

Norrlands universitetssjukhus

Vernissage 10 February 12.00

Open 10 - 21 February
Monday - Thursday 10.00 - 16.00
Friday 10.00 - 14.00

Participating artists: Carolina Andreasson, Madeleine Kozma, Jenny Käll, Laura Heuberger, Ariadna Mangrané Sancho, Frederico de Oliveira, Ellen Skafvenstedt, Alexander Skats.
Curated by Christoph Draeger.


Die Welt is alles was der Fall ist -The world is all that is the case . (1)
Eight young artists start grad school together, they know they will spend the next two years very close to each other. They come from different backgrounds, they each bring a different bag of knowledge, they have different expectations and different attitudes towards the work - but they share curiosity and excitement, maybe for some mixed with  doubt and anxiety, because they are on their way to one of the best and most difficult occupations there is: being an artist. In most causes, being a professional artist is a highly individualist profession, not to say a lonely one…Paradoxically, being an art student is, in contrast, still a very social condition.
So these eight young people decided that rather than seclude themselves in their studios, they want to explore each other, learn from one another, because their intuition tells them that this is where they can learn the most: Not from the tutors, but from each other.
For this exhibition, their first but surely not their last one together, they invented a game that derives from the sense of community they share. It bears similarity with the whisper game, insofar that each person is sender and receiver. Everyone drew a number from 1 to 8 at random. The rule of the game says that each will do a studio visit with the number in front and will receive a visit from the number behind. So #1 is interviewing #2, giving feedback on #2's project, #2 is interviewing #3, giving feedback, etc, until #8 is interviewing #1 and the project comes full circle.

This system of 'check and balances' not only gives creative input and creates discourse, but opens the possibility that the artists are inspiring and helping each other, influencing or changing each other's ideas and possibly even start collaborating on common projects. The students become aware of the other's process, and the simple fact that, like in permaculture, the artistic process can be fertilised by exchange and mutual 'pollution' - it rather rarely happens in a sterile environment or in a vacuum.
They say that humans learn the most by playing, which is certainly true for very young children. What is also true for them is that viruses are spreading easily among them, and since we are navigating in a hospital environment, the terminology in the preliminary discussions was coined by notions like "contagiousness" and "influenza", but also chain effect, and reversed domino (reversed for building instead of destroying) and even, massage-in-a-circle.
The exhibition is an artist's battle- and playground. It is the main medium to communicate visions, ideas, inventions and creations to the public. This show is an experiment: it has no set theme, but it has a set of rules with the purpose to bring the dynamics of a random group of creative thinkers into a space. Let the children play! (2)

Christoph Draeger

(1) Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 1921
(2) Carlos Santana, Festival, 1977