Although the results of my artistic practice are not always presented as lens-based works, they are without exception approaching different documentary attitudes. Central themes are the relationship between time, space and identity. Frequently expressed in site- or context-specific works, they often relate to historical or contemporary cultural production in topical contexts. Some of the works are made as full-scale representations, or rather re-representations. Others are more depictive, made in medias visually referring to aspects of the “original”. In that way “Role-playing”, ”Living History” and ”Reenactment” are concepts that immediately suggest themselves when it comes to describing both my artistic method, expression and interests. The subtext of the projects often looks at how history is inscribed into contemporary culture, and how history is constantly being constructed and reconstructed as a tool for defining national and individual identity as well as the society as a whole. In my case, the artistic process becomes a platform for “Learning by doing”, a stage for relational games, mainly aiming at empathy and reconciliation. As well as a bridge connecting and overlappning common but vague concepts like “past and present”, “master and pupil”, “tradition and modernity”, “the reactionary and the progressive”, “the personal and the political”. I sometimes accompany the visual pieces with articles, lectures and pedagogical workshops, giving them a conceptual and a cultural context.

Martin Karlsson, Januari 2011

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