My name is Anna Ganslandt and I am a visual artist.
Lovely to meet you. Where are you from?
I was born and raised in Sweden, except for some years in my childhood when I lived in Spain. I did most of my studies at the University of Gothenburg — I have a Masters degree in photography and a bachelors degree in art history — where I also teach.
What’s the art scene in Gothenburg like?
The Gothenburg art scene has suffered from being in–between the scene in Stockholm and Malmö. Stockholm, being the capital of Sweden, and Malmö, geographically close to Europe, has more Internationally connected art schools which produces vibrant art scenes.
Nevertheless there is something interesting and underground with what’s happening in Gothenburg now. The music scene, for example, is well known for being very progressive. I think that the lack of big institutions and financial means have forced our small town to create its own conditions. Gothenburg rest on its own history as an old working town; a shipping town with a dynamic shipyard and car factory, where the institutions, museums and hospitals are founded on donations.
So less money equals better and more creative types of art?
Like in so many other places, the money disappeared and left a recession in it’s wake. There is a stigma which by necessity forces the cultural production into new modes. We have plenty good, independent, artist run galleries, wedged in–between Konsthallen and Röda Sten; and even though they get some support from the city, their existence hinges on the efforts and non–profit work provided by the people involved in building the art-scene.
What kind of projects are you working on right now?
My work right now is to provide an open space for good initiatives in the region together with my best friend from college, Jan Pilgaard. One year ago we started up an non-profit organization under the name skup palet and were lucky enough to be provided with a big exhibition space at ‘Hey its enrico pallazzo’, a space that most artist in the region couldn’t afford. Here we stage theater and performance acts, art-music and exhibitions; we are trying to build it as a natural meeting point, a space for visions, discussions and experiments — sometimes very marginalized and of narrow scope — but inside a house tied to a commercial ambition. In this coalition we try to examine the conditions of the creative work and exchange knowledge and experience.
What art exhibitions are you looking forward to this year?
At the moment I’m looking forward to our opening on Saturday of Markus Anteskog’s exhibition Virtual waters. Markus was on an excursion to the Aral sea, one of the worlds most contaminated places, and using protective clothing and watercolors he has illustrated the dead landscape by dipping his brush into the highly toxic waters. The paintings were then placed in protective containers with airproofed windows. It’s a beautiful and sad work, and an important one. We have worked very hard to get it to Gothenburg and are gratified to have accomplished it.