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Noovo Editions

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Interviews ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 
----------------------------------------------------................................---.INTERVIEW WITH FOTOGRAFISKA
 
  Cathrine Setterberg Manager for Fotografiska Gallery Michelle Marie Roy
Chief Curator of Photography
 
 

© Pauline Benthede, Fotografiska
Fotografiska strive to become an important center for contemporary photography. Their ambition is to exhibit world-renown photographers, many of whom have never shown in Sweden. Located in the heart of Stockholm, the museum has an exhibition space of 2 500 square meters, and will feature 4 major exhibitions per year and approximately 15 - 20 minor exhibitions. Fotografiska aim to engage and inspire a dialogue on photography via exhibitions, seminars, and courses, in addition to actively working toward the acquisition of contemporary photography for their permanent collection. Fotografiska is housed in an industrial building dating from 1906 in the Art Nouveau style. Designed by Ferdinand Boberg. Fotografiska is housed in a former industrial Art Nouveau style building dating from 1906. Designed by Ferdinand Boberg, the building was used for the customscontrol of goods, and is listed as a building of cultural interest. The original brickfacade of the beautiful customsbuilding is intact, while the interiors have been renovated to house the museum. The city of Stockholm has funded the 250 million crown restoration costs. In addition to the exhibition spaces, of 5 500 square meters, Fotografiska houses an academy, bistro, cafe, bar, conference rooms, museum shop, gallery, and event spaces.
 
   
  The exhibition "Fashion – fashion photography through time"
December 9, 2010 – January 2, 2011
Could you introduce yourself?
Cathrine Setterberg: My name is Cathrine Setterberg, Manager for Fotografiska Gallery.
Michelle Marie Roy: I am a photographer, curator, and video artist based in Stockholm, Sweden. I was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and I moved to Sweden 10 years ago to persue my art history degree. You could say I fell into photography. When I was young, I always dreamed of being a painter, and when I entered university, I majored in drawing and painting. But one summer I went to Italy with the University of Georgia studies abroad program, and during my stay I took a photography course. I experimented a lot, and the professor believed I had talent. He urged me to apply to the photography program. I was accepted, and after graduation, I never picked up a brush again. To be honest, I am a lazy painter. I use photography to achieve what I am not willing to work at on the canvas. I was inspired by photographers like Hannah Wilke, Cindy Sherman, Jamemi Stehli and Carrie Mae Weems to name a few. Photography was my way to investigate identity. I come from Deep South, namely Atlanta, Georgia, where gender roles are traditional and clearly defined. When I relocated to Sweden, I naturally faced an identity crisis. I was now an outsider. My entrance into the photography scene began with my art history studies. I decided I wanted to work with exhibition production and I continued to earn my masters in curating. Although I work full time with exhibitions, I can appreciate the struggle of the artist. I feel it is important to engage the artist, of possible, in all aspects of the exhibition.

© Russell James, "Scarlett", Los Angeles, 2005

How did it come up with the idea of establish a specialized place in contemporary photography in the heart of Stockholm?
Michelle Marie Roy: Fotografiska is the result of the rising interest in photography in Sweden. I have my personal theory as to why this is. Sweden was ranked number 1 this year as the most proficient country in technology skills and usage of communications technology. The Swedes love their gadgets. Digital system cameras are extremely popular here, and I suppose the significance of photography has grown due to the immense interest the general public has in creating their own photographs. The advent of the digital revolution has made it possible, via simple digital editing software and printing, for amateur photographers to develop their skills and produce high quality photographic images. This was certainly sensed by our founders, Jan and Per Broman, who had previously established Fotomässan, the Swedish Photography Fair.

Why Stockholm?, did you feel it was an empty space in Stockholm for a project like this one?
Michelle Marie Roy: We wanted to create a space for photography that could accommodate large traveling shows, such as "Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer's Life". In this way, we are able to bring to Stockholm internationally renowned photographers that have not exhibited here before, such as Leibovitz. Additionally we want to produce exhibitions that create a dialogue on photography as well as provide a platform for Swedish photographers.


© Robert Nettarp, ”Missy Raider smoking” Paris 2001


What is the difference between Fotografiska Gallery and the Fotografiska Museum, what criteria do you have to make it different?
Cathrine Setterberg: The difference is that the gallery is a commercial gallery that aims to sell the artworks we exhibit. The gallery is also an innovative exhibition space for both emerging photographers as well as established and well known photographers.

Fotografiska Editions is a web-based forum for selling high-end contemporary photography in the form of signed prints by some of Sweden’s most significant artists as well as by emerging young artists. Could you explain a bit more what are your aims for this editions?
Cathrine Setterberg: Our aim is to make accessible a great selection of contemporary Swedish photography. By selling it on our web site in a rather large edition (25) we make it easier and affordable for people from all parts of the country and abroad to see and buy great contemporary photography.


© Michelangelo Di Battista & Tina Berning, "Face Project 1", Paris 2007




© David Drebin, "Over the Top", New York City 2009



What did Fotografiska means to you?
Michelle Marie Roy: Fotografiska is a dynamic space for the exhibition of photography. They say it is a privilege to work with what you love. I certainly feel privileged!


What do you like the most about working in this kind of project?
Cathrine Setterberg: The feeling of being part of something that really evolves and challenges the photo and art scene.
Michelle Marie Roy: Of course, the highlight of my work is becoming acquainted with the photographers. I am able to do this as most of the work we exhibit is contemporary. For me, communicating directly with the artists is incredibly rewarding. It allows me to become engaged in their work on a personal level.


© Robert Nettarp, ”Hanging with meat”, Stockholm 2002


What are the expectations of someone who visits Fotografiska?
Michelle Marie Roy: We have an extremely broad audience, and our exhibitions vary for this reason. For example, our Fashion! exhibition can appeal to photography connoisseurs, fashion lovers, as well as people who are interested in celebrities. On the other hand we also exhibit Swedish photography, such as Lars Tunbjörk's video installation, or the work of fine artist Sandy Skoglund. I think our audience comes to Fotografiska for the exhibition that sparks their particular interests, but also

© Esther Haase, "The Fearless Lola Walking the Lion King", Miami, 1999


As a curator of Fotografiska, what do you think, with your experience, that Fotografiska is looking for in a photographer´s portfolio?
Michelle Marie Roy: I have a very open stance regarding exhibition submissions. We receive several submissions per day. Quite naturally, we want to exhibit photographers to the museum who have had an influential role within the development of the medium. Such as scientific photographer Lennart Nilsson’s pivotal series A Child is Born, or Annie Leibovitz’ portraiture. With regard to unestablished photographers, I am looking for a strong pictorial language, a unique approach to the medium, as well as a professional presentation of the work.

© Paolo Roversi, "Guinevere in Red Dress by Yves Saint Laurent", Paris 1996


So, what's next for Fotografiska?
Michelle Marie Roy: Our next exhibition is "Lady Warhol" a project Andy Warhol did together with photographer Christopher Makos. We will premiere the exhibition! The series reveals another side of Warhol and it will be the first solo exhibition with the series.














Fotografiska
Stadsgårdshamnen 22
116 45 Stockholm
More Info: http://en.fotografiska.eu


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