We have the great pleasure to inaugurate 2020 by showing a series of paintings by Henrik Eriksson that are based on “realities” or to put it differently: in an experience of being in an absolute moment of “here and now”. They are painted with oil on aluminum; a material which in itself implies a kind of resistance to hidden layers. Instead, the process of painting takes place on the surface, in an instant movement that captures the viewer’s gaze. The painting can almost be perceived as floating drawings with lines and colors that create their own inner spatiality.

These different movements of pattern that are visible in the paintings, Eriksson describes is a way of experiencing the painting process in his own body. It is a bodily sensation that guides him as much in his own work as in viewing works of other artists’. It is an interesting and significant dimension in almost all forms of painting processes, how the physical act ”to paint” is about a kind of absolute presence that leaves traces, like a frozen dance. But Eriksson also talks about his paintings as scenes, where everything is open and visible to the viewer as on a stage, and not hidden in layers or structures. And that’s correct; Looking at Eriksson’s lines and brushstrokes is like following an ongoing movement of strokes and color fields that rhythmically slides, wanders or bounces around.

The sensation of landscapes is also present, which is evoked by the organic nature of the lines and colors. In many of his works we envision horizon lines, skies, mountain scenery and vegetation; it is impossible not to see references to nature. Again, Eriksson uses the scene or a stage as a metaphor to describe his idea; he wants to create a context where we, as viewers, can step in and become part of a larger environment. While he in the beginning mainly worked with conceptual art and project-based installations, he has recently returned to painting to find a more direct form of artistic freedom. It is about searching different forms of realities in an ongoing and never-ending process.

(Eva-Lotta Holm Flach)

Henrik Eriksson is educated at the Royal College of Art in Stockholm and Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow. He founded and directed the gallery ak28 during the 00s and is currently active in Stockholm, among other things, as a temporary assistant in painting at Konstfack. He has participated in exhibitions such as ”Swedish Painting Now” at Kunsthal Charlottenborg, ”Tomorrow Always Belongs to Us” at Gothenburg Art Hall and is currently part of the exhibition ”The trees stand bright green: Landscape then and now” at Bonnier’s Konsthall, Stockholm 22/1 – 29 / 3 2020.