Unfold a Place


Unfold a Place was a group exhibition in Gagnef and Falun that emerged through an artistic research project that spanned over a year, about culture heritage in Dalarna and the legacy of artist, author and culture worker Ottilia Adelborg (18551936). The exhibition was made in collaboration with the non-profit organization Gagnef Artist-in-Residence and the Ottilia Adelborg Museum with support from the region and the municipality. Participating artists were Marc Handelman, Tatiana Danilevskaya, Kristina Bength, Nuno Vicente, Anders Bergman and Malin Pettersson Öberg. Curated by Sara Rossling.

Excerpt from exhibition text

How we perceive a place is very much a reflection of who we are, our background and where we are in life. When we encounter a city, village, or any kind of geographical site, we produce a certain image of that place in accordance to our previous experiences. However, all aspects of a place can not be visible to us at the same time. Rather, these aspects might be folded away and in order to become unfolded they somehow need to be mediated.

The international group exhibition Unfold a Place takes Dalarna and Gagnef as a point of departure seen through the practices of six artists, all attending GAIR's research project The Legacy of Ottilia. The project explored cultural heritage through contemporary art, lectures, archive visits, excursions and by researching the seemingly overlooked artist Ottilia Adelborg (1855 Karlskrona –1936 Gagnef).

With inspiration from Gilles Deleuze's concept of the fold, in The Fold: Leibniz and the Barock (1988), the exhibition can be experienced through Deleuze's principle by using the fold as way to discover what potentially is contained within ‘something’. When Adelborg arrived in Gagnef 1902 she became struck by the colorful landscape and later decided to stay the rest of her life. Devoted to a self-announced mission: rescuing and collecting items, clothes and crafts related to the old peasant culture from dying out and building a museum for them, Minnesstugan. She also engaged in the women's movement, pedagogy and contributed to strengthen children's situation. Through her many initiatives and gestures she unfolds a specific view of Gagnef in a time when museums, artists, ethnologists, the homecraft movement and the local history movement together lay a foundation for a heritage canon of folk objects defining Dalarna as the core of Swedish culture.

How can we approach those ideas today? Are there alternative views of this place, folded within hers, that are not yet opened up?

Read the full length exhibition text here and a review of the exhibition here.