Where do I belong?

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Me at the opening of my debute solo show as a horror artist, 2007

For the first time ever, I’ve tried to define myself as an artist and my style in an artist statement for my new website. It’s really hard. What is my ambition as an artist? What drives me? What genre does my art belong to? I’ve gone through many styles throughout my career;  neo-victorian horror, lowbrow, gothic, popsurrealism and art brut. Perhaps it’s because I’ve gone through so many personal transformations as well. My styles vary a lot but I do see a theme running through all my works – balancing the raw and the delicate.

I feel at home in genres like primitive art, naÏve art, folk art and outsider art – with a twist of lowbrow.. But am I an outsider artist? I do feel like an outsider and I deal with traumas and primitive expressions in my art but an outsider artist lives completely outside society’s conventions and rules. Perhaps I’m too obedient to consider myself to be an outsider artist. But I could make my own art genre. Primitive expressionism? Outsider-lowbrow? It’s really hard. The word ‘outsider’ rings true to me because I’m also an outsider in the Swedish art community. I Googled ‘outsider art’ in my hometown and the word or concept doesn’t even exist here:

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I feel like this could be my future mission – to create a place for myself and other artists like me – and people who belong to the outsider genre but doesn’t even know they are artists because they live in mental institutions or are isolated in some way. It would be a beautiful mission.

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