MALMÖ, SWEDEN.- The Rooseum Center for Contemporary Art presents Whatever happened to social democracy? through April 10, 2005. Whatever happened to social democracy? is the title of this spring’s large-scale group exhibition at Rooseum. The exhibition includes photographs, installations and video-based works, which present differing points of departure and reflections upon today’s society and cultural, social and political reality.
The title of the exhibition alludes to a changing society in which core values are loosened and replaced with new understandings and ideas. The exhibition will especially focus on 20th century social democratic thinking in its many versions and the important influence it has had on culture and society in Sweden, and many other European countries, in the formation of national identity and the development of the welfare society. Economic globalisation, new forms of migration and free market policy have, however, expanded contemporary cultural and political terrain and tested our common values. These new conditions have resulted in the fact that we must relate to new problems and challenges including intolerance and cultural difference in increasingly heterogeneous societies.
Whatever happened to social democracy? will focus on how alternative perspectives on a changing cultural and political environment can be communicated through art. The works will not give direct answers to the rhetorical title. Instead, around twenty works of art will reflect upon and open discussion on areas including historic social democratic projects, socialism and capitalism, ambition and defeat. Several of the works have been developed in connection with the exhibition and three works have been produced within the framework of Rooseum’s art program In 2052 Malmö will no longer be ‘Swedish’. These artists have, during residencies in Malmö, developed new projects that deal with multiculturalism and our understandings of migration and cultural difference. The projects will be presented both at Rooseum and in different places in Malmö.
In addition, a program consisting of TV series, documentaries and feature films from the 1960s and 70s will be shown. The program will take us back to the “record years” when many promises were issued, a time when people in general were critical towards the prevailing order and a series of reforms of emancipation were carried out. A related series of public talks will also take place throughout the exhibition period with their jumping off point being some of the exhibition’s many underlying subjects.
Participating artists: Lars Arrhenius (SE), AUPG (SE), Stuart Brisley (UK), Mike Bode & Staffan Schmidt (SE), Pavel Büchler (UK), Sophie Calle (F), Esra Ersen (TR), Per Hasselberg (SE), Maria Hedlund (SE), Laura Horelli (FI), Frida Hultcrantz (E), Ilona Huss Walin (SE), Lyn Löwenstein (UK), Jørgen Michaelsen (DK), Aernout Mik (NL), Museum in Progress (AU), Olof Olsson (SE), Katya Sander (DK), Mladen Stilinovic (HR), Amikam Toren (IL).
The exhibition is curated by Rooseum in collaboration with Charles Esche, director of Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven and Pavel Büchler, artist and professor at Manchester Metropolitan University.
An accompanying film programme has been organised by Anders Kreuger, curator and PhD candidate at Malmö Art Academy.
Whatever happened to social democracy? is supported by The Foundation Culture of the Future, and Nordic Culture Fund.