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Why is art criticism in Sweden so friendly?


In The Guardian, Finnish artist Helena Schjerfbeck was seen. Pontus Kyander believes that criticism is inspiring and wonders why Swedish critics are so cautious.

Helene Schjerfbeck, self-portrait.

Can you be mean in the artistic sense? During the week, the Royal Academy in London opened an exhibition with Finnish Helena Schjerfbeck (1862-1946), both in the homeland and in Sweden. But now this has happened unreasonably. The Guardian, the toughest newspaper in London, gave the show two stars out of five, and critic Jonathan Jones said that Schierfbecks was "uninspired" miserabilism"Only for the most binding." The self-portraits made for Schierfbecko's renaissance at the international level thirty years ago are summed up as "bizarre and not tragic".

So you could think, and you may feel wrong. However, the review forces the artist to take a stand. On the one hand, you have an institutional weight, second, an established critique with the weight of a leading and respected newspaper. You can get angry or agree that Schjerfbeck is an overvalued artist.

For me, as a professional critic, it is revived with an overview that contains a clear statement. Risk, yes they accept Fundamental errors are the essence of a critical role. Without it, critique becomes only a water-swing.

There are strong critics in literature, popular music and film. In visual arts, however, they rarely appear in Sweden. Convenience, caution and respect are honorary words of art criticism with us. We do not put stars on the show, it would be cruel and unfinished.

Why is art criticism? in Sweden so "friendly"? Is this to protect the ever-endangered art? Individual artists can often have difficult, self-contained galleries that can exist in rare circumstances, but as an "institution" art in Sweden is well-grounded with the infrastructure of museums, art galleries and galleries, and the scholarship system creates an artistic core as a whole (albeit not individually) . artists) have relative security. However, as little as the task of music criticism to protect music labels and artists, it is the role of art criticism to embed artists and institutions into cotton.

The example is no better because the local critic is constantly confronted with the same local gallery artists, institutional leaders and artists. In the long run, it's hard to defend intimacy.

But they are just circumstances. The basic problem is that the art critic in the art system as a whole is a weak position. An individual critic is an uncertain creature that is not anchored either on the art scene or in the newspaper. Unlike an established artist (and a non-commercial gallery), the critic can not look hungry for the public and private system of scholarships and scholarships. And despite the fact that the work is done in premises similar to journalists (day and short deadlines), an art critic is not considered a journalist and is paid with needle money.

Then it becomes an artistic critique. Naturally, gifted and fearless writers are needed, but there is also a need for a reasonable economic basis and an opportunity to develop and expand experiences (art is always made and usually not at home). The newspapers are the ones that must create the basis for standing profiled criticism. So they can afford to be wrong.

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