artists & participants
The great success of the social democratic welfare state was at first more visible in the Nordic countries. Possibly as a consequence of being at the forefront of these developments the ‘crisis’ of the welfare state in the last decade also occurred firstly in Scandinavia. Increasing unemployment, demographic questions such as the problem of an aging population, and a growing number of immigrants and political refugees raised issues that tested the limits of the social democratic welfare-state.
One of the more important concerns of a number of artists today is the question of how to deal with these kinds of problems. How to improve our relationships with each other as people with different interests, cultures and ideologies in a globalized economy where more and more people are now rightly demanding their fair share of welfare, wealth, health, culture, education and social representation.
This exhibition presents a number of artists from Denmark (or artists who may not be of Danish nationality but who maintain relationships with the country) who have - over the last 10 years or so - been consistently approaching these questions in many different ways and with the use of various media, techniques and strategies or processes.
Regarding Denmark is not a generalised presentation of ‘Danish art’ but aims to highlight areas of Danish contemporary art practice which are characterised by a serious concern with socio-political issues particular to Denmark but also to other European countries, especially those who have invested heavily in social policies and welfare expenditure.
We in Europe are increasingly bearing witness to unstable social relationships between ‘locals’ and immigrants, poor housing, the lack of good and easy accessible education, the increasing privatisation of health care and the clash of the Islamic and Christian culture.
Denmark is also one of the countries now facing these encroaching problems. What happens when countries which traditionally have been considered as paradigmatic social models, begin to face these problems? How do artists respond to the increasing attack on the social-democratic model, the rise of nationalism and xenophobia, the erosion of civil liberties and public space?
The artists in this exhibition all share an interest in these vital socio-political questions, whether they are particular to the Danish situation or of a more international scope.
Regarding Denmark takes Denmark – which has been caught in the crossfire of these socio-cultural confrontations - as its point of departure to look into the symptomatology of traditionally ‘progressive’ societies which have been gradually veering towards neo-liberal conservative policies that are increasingly taking more and more away from citizens in terms of social rights and civil liberties. Regarding Denmark is grounded in an expanded analysis of social space and an interest in the public arena and current affairs. The artists in the exhibition all approach these problems and issues with a critical eye regardless of the media they work in, often aiming to posit questions and to problematise rather than positing definitive answers .
Kurator: Katerina Gregos
mit Jakob S. Boeskov, Chamber of Public Secrets , Thierry Geoffroy / Colonel, Jens Haaning, Lise Harlev, FOS , Maryam Jafri, Henrik Plenge Jakobsen, Jakob Kolding, Lars Mathisen, Jørgen Michaelsen, Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen, Kirstine Roepstorff, Katya Sander, Superflex