Joakim Forsgren’s works can be described in terms of spatial essays in which he explores complex phenomena spanning from right-wing nationalism and notions of security to urban planning and degenerative diseases. But rather than forming a coherent set of ideas into a linear argument as in a written essay, Forsgren’s installations of objects, videos, photographs and sound deliberately complicate their subject matters. By bringing contradictions and ambiguities to the fore, they generate questions without giving any simplifying or univocal answer. Through subtle alterations and unexpected associations of objects, Forsgren creates frictions that destabilize ordinary perception and impel the viewer to question what is taken for granted. Parting from the specificity of a site or the history of an icon, the resulting installations are only one part of process-oriented, long-term projects that often build on interdisciplinary collaborations. With a similar methodology, Forsgren at times takes on the role of the curator and organizes group exhibitions in atypical venues where disparate works collide and melt into a new total work of art.
Joakim Forsgren (b. 1981, Skutskär) lives and works in Stockholm, Sweden. He holds an MFA in Art in the Public Realm/Fine Arts from Konstfack and has been awarded working grants from the The Swedish Arts Grants Committee, Konstfrämjandet and Region Gävleborg among others. Recent solo exhibitions include The Mind-Body Problem at Karolinska Institutet (2019), Underjordiska förbindelser (Underground Connections) in a former bomb shelter in Ljusdal (2018) and Andra svepningen (Second Shroud) at Växjö konsthall (2016). Forsgren’s work has also been shown in group exhibitions such as the 9th Göteborg International Biennal for Contemporary Art (2017) and the 9th Shiryaevo Biennale (2017).
– Johanna Thorell