Cecilia Edefalk

White Within

At Bonniers Konsthall

For nearly 25 years, Cecilia Edefalk (b. 1954, Norrköping, Sweden) has been one of Sweden’s most renowned artists. With an experience or photograph as the basis for her paintings, repetition has become a founding pillar of her artistry. She reuses motifs and appreciates showing works time and time again. When she finds something of interest, she does not let it rest until the motif is exhausted. The paintings in the series White Within emerged from an encounter with a sculpture in San Gimignano, Italy in 1997  –  a 14th century angel, painted, and of the same scale as Cecilia Edefalk at the city museum. The series has since been exhibited regularly throughout Europe, and with each exhibition, the possibilities and limitations of each site have created changes in the works – the paintings have hung from the ceiling, stood stacked against the walls, and smaller source photographs have hung on top of the large paintings. To some extent, the repetition can be seen as an opposition to notion that artists must always show something new. But with each display of White Within, the paintings have carried with them traces of atmosphere from the earlier sites – adding a layer of time, space and memory to the layers of color. The paintings, according to the artist herself, function as a kind of capturing net. At Bonniers Konsthall, seven large paintings in the series will be shown together with a presentation of their history through sketches, notes and photographs.

As a part of Art of memory Cecilia Edefalk’s work History for the Future will be shown at The Strindberg Museum. The text-based video work presents a dialogue on art and life with the late author August Strindberg, who Cecilia Edefalk, for many years, has had supernatural conversations with.  He expressed, among other things, strong opinions about the particular series White Within.

White Within in the Lund Cathedral, 2005. Photo: Carl Henrik Tillberg
White Within in the Lund Cathedral, 2005. Photo: Carl Henrik Tillberg

History for the Future 

At the Strindberg Museum

One spring day, four years ago, Cecilia Edefalk sat on a bench in Tegnérlunden. In the distance, she saw a man with a distinctive hat come towards her and realized that it was August Strindberg. He sat down on the bench beside her and said, “meaningless”. She did not hear his voice, but saw words as sentences written in front of her, in a certain rhythm. The text-based video work History for the Future puts foward, in the same rhythm, a long conversation between Cecilia Edefalk and the author. Strindberg expresses strong opinions on her love life and art, in particular a number of large paintings that should be “painted white inside”. During Art of Memory, Cecilia’s Edefalk’s White Within will be exhibited at Bonniers Konsthall – the specific works Strindberg spoke with her about.

For nearly 25 years, Cecilia Edefalk (b. 1954, Norrköping) has been one of Sweden’s most renowned artists. Though working primarily with painting, she has in recent years shown numerous works where she engages in conversations with historical artists, such as Ivan Aguéli and Hilma af Klint.

Cecilia Edefalk. Photo: Olle Kirchmeier

Read an interview with Cecilia Edefalk in Bonniers Konsthall’s Magazine!