twitter facebook
Ida Pettersson in her artwork "Rosalie". 2003

When I read descriptions of the mythical creatures you selected, I occasionally caught myself feeling a childlike delight. Do you think it is also important for art to stir up these types of emotions? Unexpected surprise, excitement, delight. Or perhaps this isn’t the primary function?

I think if a work of art possesses something like this, that’s only a good thing. A small dose of humor rejuvenates it. There tend to be works of art that seem dry. It’s important that a viewer can link a work of art to their personal experiences.

An interest in stories has been the basis for some of your other works, too. For example, you created a work of art from various films with the same plot. Why are you so attracted to stories?

For me, it’s always seemed interesting to emphasize part of a story, leaving the beginning and end open, when you don’t know how the events will develop. I’m attracted to narrative, how people present things.

For example, this exhibit has many separate units, but I wanted for all of them to merge with one another, so the texts overlap. Instead of presenting everything transparently, I like when an exhibit is layered and you have to unravel it. There are many exhibits that are crystal clear, like advertisements. But I prefer a blending of meanings, which allows you to guess and interpret.

Your solo exhibit is divided into two parts—one features myths and the other features scientific explanations. If I’m not mistaken, then Theodor Adorno said that scientific facts are myths too, only contemporary myths.

Yes, exactly right! That is the basic idea behind the exhibit. What is true today, is no longer true tomorrow. To play with the values of truth is one of the guideline of my art.

Looking at things philosophically, there is the world of myths and the (seemingly) scientific world. Where does the artist belong in all this?

I think there isn’t one answer to this. It depends on who the artist is. There are those who want to be like scientists in their work. But artists have the magic to immediately choose want they want to be at the present moment. They can play around.