The appointment of the trio Jelena Rundkvist, Ylva Ogland and Rodrigo Mallea Lira as the new directors to the Tensta Kunsthalle in the outskirts of Stockholm, an area most known for the large population of immigrants, made the heart of the art scene in Sweden skip a beat. The board of Tensta had just recently sacked the previous director on dubious grounds, and the curator Celia Prado, who always put on an extremely well executed shows with international stars, quit her job in protest in the rumble that followed. Some in the art community were appalled that they accepted the nomination, disregarding the previous events. Some prominent names simmered up to protest to the board of Tensta’s decisions, directors, curators, critics, artists and gallerists such as Sune Nordgren, Daniel Birnbaum and Claes Nordenhake have all signed a petition to have the previous director of Tensta reinstalled. Undoubtedly the petition will fall flat to the ground, the process is too far-gone. The three new directors have just recently opened up a completely new institution, just a few months before the nomination to Tensta, in a different suburb far away from the center of the city. The institution named Konst 2, will be continued to be directed by the tripod alongside Tensta, as well as the continuation of their artistic and independent curating careers on the side. Is it necessary to point out that the three are very young, ambitious and energetic?
They have earlier been behind different new approaches to exhibiting, and incorporating younger talents in different productions of trying to cross the boundaries between art and other fields as architecture, design, fashion and so on, with various results but always with great response in Swedish media. The future program of the suburban art franchise will certainly be interesting to follow up on.
Another institution, Magasin 3, has just recently appointed internationally renown “associate curators” to their crew; previously mentioned Daniel Birnbaum, Rosa Martinez, Jerome Sans and Sarit Shapira. It remains to be seen if these extremely busy curators will contribute to exhibitions made exclusively for Magasin 3 or if their contributions only will consist of previously made exhibitions that will be travelling to Stockholm, or possibly only as some kind of advisory board. In any case, the art scene of Stockholm seems to be lightening up again after some years of regression.
One of the most ambitious galleries in Sweden, Brändström & Stene will move to new and large (500 m2) premises. Their last show in the old space will be with Basel Statement artist Juan Pedro Fabra Guemberena, and Olafur Eliasson will open up the new space with a bang, no doubt.