STRANGE FREEDOMS SHALL BE SOUGHT
Installasjonsbilde, Ida Ekblad, STRANGE FREEDOMS SHALL BE SOUGHT, Kode, 2023. Ⓒ Ida Ekblad / BONO 23, gjengitt med tillatelse fra kunstner og Kode. Foto: Dag Fosse / Kode
Ida Ekblad (b. 1980) is one of our most renowned contemporary artists.
This summer, she is back with the exhibition STRANGE FREEDOMS SHALL BE SOUGHT at Kode.
Closing Sunday 8 October!
Plan your visit
Open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm
The installation STRANGE FREEDOMS SHALL BE SOUGHT consists of six monumental sculptures in cast iron. It was first presented in 2021 at Ekblad's solo exhibition at Kunstnernes hus.
Cast iron is an ancient material, and in her work, Ekblad has been inspired by the traditional cast iron stoves that have a long and rich history in Norway.
The exhibition will be on show in Kode’s historical Permanenten building, which was originally built to showcase the best of art, craftsmanship and design. The exhibition spaces were originally heated by this type of stove.
A visual arts format steeped in tradition
The design of the cast iron sculptures’ visual expression is at the heart of the artist’s methods. Ekblad designs each individual component, which are then put together into unique combinations and cast in collaboration with traditional foundries.
Cast iron stoves have been a necessity of life in Norway. Until the 20th century, they were often decorated with reliefs of fairytale figures or religious symbols drawn by Norwegian artists and designed by architects.
Ekblad continues this tradition in her minimalistic and monumental works. If you look closely, intricate reliefs, silhouettes, as well as mysterious phrases, are revealed, drawing the viewer into the artist's genre-breaking universe.
Ida Ekblad’s artistry is characterised by a genre-breaking approach that draws inspiration from sub-culture and pop culture, with graffiti, manga and memes, craft traditions, old master paintings and outsider art. Sources of artistic inspiration include Odilon Redon, Paula Modersohn-Becker, Paul Thek, Harriet Backer, Edvard Munch, Florine Stettheimer and Helen Frankenthaler.
Ekblad’s artistic practice is focused around our hypervisual culture, which she attempts to record, understand and reformulate.
Ida Ekblad, PIKE LÆGGER I OVNEN, Installasjonsfoto / Installation view, 2021. Foto: Uli Holz. © Ida Ekblad / BONO 2023, courtesy the artist and Kunstnernes Hus.
Fra Kunstnernes Hus i 2021.
Installation view, Ida Ekblad, PIKE LÆGGER I OVNEN, Installasjonsfoto / Installation view, 2021. Foto: Uli Holz. © Ida Ekblad / BONO 2023, courtesy the artist and Kunstnernes Hus.
Installation view, Ida Ekblad, PIKE LÆGGER I OVNEN, installasjonsfoto / Installation view, 2021. Foto: Uli Holz. © Ida Ekblad / BONO 2023, courtesy the artist and Kunstnernes Hus.
About the artist
Ida Ekblad lives and works in Oslo. Her degrees are from Central St. Martins College of Art i London (2001), Oslo National Academy of the Arts (2007) and the Mountain School of Arts, Los Angeles, USA (2008). Ekblad’s work has been presented at numerous exhibitions around the world over the past fifteen years, including at the Venice Biennale (2011 and 2017), Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Bonniers Konsthall in Stockholm, the National Museum and Kunstnernes hus in Oslo, Museo Rufino Tamayo in Mexico City and Kunsthalle Zurich.
Her work has been purchased by a number of key public and private institutions and are included in both national and international collections.