The exhibition A Way of Life – Swedish Photography from Christer Strömholm until Today features more than 350 works by 29 photographers from Moderna Museet’s rich collection of photography. From the seminal Christer Strömholm, via influences such as Anders Petersen, Tuija Lindström and Kenneth Gustavsson, to three younger, current photographers, the exhibition highlights the intimate and subjective tendencies in Swedish photography, with the addition of a few foreign examples. With its wide and deep perspective, it reveals many different ways of life.
Christer Strömholm (1918-2002) is a beacon of Nordic photography and has inspired many generations of younger photographers. Among his most well-known serial works are pictures of his transsexual friends from Place Blanche in Paris. The exhibition features many of the photographers represented in the Moderna Museet collection, who came after Strömholm – Yngve Baum, Agneta Ekman, Gunnar Smoliansky and Anders Petersen –who have all contributed to developing Strömholm’s legacy.
The exhibition also presents three photographers from a younger generation. JH Engström (b. 1969) has long been regarded as a disciple of Christer Strömholm and Anders Petersen, and his series Tout va bien (2014) is the most recent work in the exhibition. Like Engström, Anna Clarén (b. 1972) belongs to a generation of photographers who made their debut in the 1990s. Her pale colour photographs feature people and places in her immediate surroundings. The third contemporary photographer, Martin Bogren (b. 1967), lives in Limhamn, and his series Lowlands (2011) is a personal account in black-and-white photographs of a small rural village in Skåne.
“It is wonderful that the Moderna Museet collection boasts such a vital part of modern Swedish photo history. Martin Bogren, Anna Clarén and JH Engström are three contemporary photographers who demonstrate how strong and interesting the Nordic photography scene is right now,” says Anna Tellgren, curator.
The exhibition title, “A Way of Life”, is a quote from a lecture by Christer Strömholm. He said, “for me, working with photographic images is a way of life. When I think of it, and when I look carefully at my images, all of them, in one way or another, are nothing but self-portraits, a part of my life.” This approach is shared by all the photographers represented in the exhibition. Our selection also includes several self-portraits, friend portraits, and portraits of Christer Strömholm.