CHILDREN AND IMAGE
ARJA TOIVONEN (Latin American paintings), LATIN AMERICA pictures by Native American children.
SVEN H JOHANSSON (drawings and watercolors)
The exhibition children and image was an account of the pedagogical activities conducted through outreach activities at preschools and schools, and on site in Södertälje konsthall with the workshop in what was then Luna. It was also a look at the different techniques and materials they worked with. At the same time, pictures of children belonging to Native Americans were shown. The artist Arja Toivonen documented and collected the pictures during her travels. She depicted the children’s everyday life and environment in their own paintings. Watercolors and drawings by Sven H Johansson were displayed in the graphics cabinet.
During this period, Elisabeth Haitto was acting director of Södertälje konsthall. In the exhibition folder’s preface, she talks about the art gallery’s long-standing tradition, of pedagogical displays of the art gallery’s exhibitions, and the opportunity to then create her own images in the then Luna Library’s workshop. “What has been common and characterized the different work situations, in the practical creative work, is that the artist ROLANDO PEREZ has acted as supervisor. /… / What we are now showing in the exhibition CHILDREN AND IMAGE has mainly been added during the past year. The exhibitions that inspired are i.a. the large JAZZ exhibition (prod. by the Gothenburg Art Museum) and MIKLATUN-MANHATTAN (prod. by the Nordic Art Center). In addition, there are a number of fantastic self-portraits painted by children in preschools and after-school centers. The project with the self-portrait, also under the leadership of Rolando Perez, has already been going on for several years and has proven to be very successful.” The then cultural editor of Länstidningen, Christer Duke reviews the exhibition with praise. ” Children and image” is an exhibition that should be noticed out in cultural Sweden. It points to all the desired clarity that Södertälje cultural administration has reached an art pedagogy for children that has really been effective. ” Roland Perez tells Duke – It has been a great pleasure to be able to follow the children. See how their ability to observe, their way of looking at themselves has changed in their self-portrait – from eg kindergarten to preschool /… /. As inspiration, Rolando and the children have looked at portrait reproductions in different expressions and techniques from art history.
He has advised them to visit the museums in the future, where you can see the portraits live. The children have learned the technique with cover paint and then had their paintings framed. Educational staff have driven out to preschools with easels and materials. This has resulted in a generation of Södertälje children probably still having their fine works of art as a memory of who they were and how they perceived themselves as children (including the son of the undersigned). A nice meeting with a real artist that surely many remember.
CULTURE IN PRESCHOOL was at the time a collaborative project between the social administration and the cultural administration, starting in 1981 in Södertälje. CULTURE IN THE SCHOOL started in 1984 and was then a collaboration between the school administration and the cultural administration. These were linked to collaboration groups with representatives from the library, art section, program activities and Torekällberget (The Citys open-air museum.)
“Of the ten municipalities surveyed by the TCO magazine, Södertälje is the one that invests the most in culture for preschool children.” This is how it reads in no. 6/87 of the newspaper. Inger Antonsson at the then current cultural administration shows the newspaper the file, the blue box she has on her desk, the register for all preschools and their wishes on the cultural offer. “With all the preschools’ cards and wishes in front of her, she distributes the whole thing as fairly as possible.” Outreach activities, but still a certain dissatisfaction is expressed that resources are not enough for the needs. The level of ambition was very high. She goes on to say “… Of course, those who work out at the preschools in Södertälje are annoyed at the long queue that exists for several of the events. -I think they have the right to be angry about sex. It should be obvious that everyone got a share of all our projects, says Inger. We point out that Södertälje is still the municipality of the ten we surveyed that invests most in culture for preschool children. Then Inger says: -It does not mean that it can be as good as it can be here. We should not demand less just because it is worse elsewhere. ”
For many years, Södertälje konsthall had a unique Picture Theater in its premises. Janne Nordahl, Södertälje konsthalls photographer, was the creator of these slide shows about different artists. For this exhibition, his Devotional Glows and color songs around Sven H Johansson’s painting were shown. Christer Duke raises Nordahl to the skies in his review. “In him, the municipality really has an artistic asset. His slide show is one of the unique things in cultural Sweden. He has a rare ability to empathize with an artist’s visual world – and its inner life. With his camera, he captures the mysterious life of colors with great care and insight! Nordahl highlights the distinctive color in Sven H Johansson’s large watercolors. You experience the light that breaks through the color masses. Which became the creation for a moment transparent – to the heavenly light. “. The suggestive is further enhanced with lyrics and music. Janne Nordahl is also the creator of a large postcard suite around the Polish artist Wladyslaw Hasior’s sculpture group Solspann at Östra kanalslänten in Södertälje. The six horses are depicted with magical dramatic color, with elements of moon and fire in the dark. The postcards, a long-time bestseller at the small book-shop at Södertälje konsthall.
Sources: exhibition folder CHILDREN AND PICTURE quote: Elisabeth Haitto, Länstidningen 19 February 1988 texts by cultural editor Christer Duke, photo: Roland Thunholm, quoted Christer Duke and Rolando Perez, TCO-tidningen 6/87 quote: Inger Antonsson. Compiled by: Anneli Karlsson.