Happily Ever After
October 27, 2023–March 31, 2024
Participating artists: Muhammad Ali, Anita Christoffersson, Markus Copper, Jeanne Dunning, Stina Ebers, Elis Eriksson, Helena Fernández-Cavada, Ester Fleckner, Jenny Grönvall, Ramón Guillén-Balmes, Sive Hamilton Helle, Leif Holmstrand, Adelita Husni-Bey, E.B. Itso, Jesper Just, Joachim Koester, Jukka Korkeila, Ellinor Lager, Gloria López Cleries, Truls Melin, Britt-Ingrid Persson BIP, Iris Smeds, Superflex, Hannah Toticki and Ulla Wiggen.
Curators: Julia Björnberg & Anna Johansson.
The exhibition Happily Ever After brings together artists and artist collectives whose practices explore what happens to us as individuals and collectives in a time cast in a haze of neoliberal optimization of the self, economic and political stakes in our emotions, and an increasing contempt for weakness. Through a range of artistic expression, topics such as mindfulness, welfare state profits, the tech industry, and social media are addressed. Together, the works point to how our mode of experiencing and expressing feelings is in flux and how these changes in turn affect how we see ourselves, each other, and society.
We move through a paradoxical landscape, where we are seduced by and lose ourselves in the dreams and ideals presented by capitalism, to the point where we believe them to be our own. What happens when our emotions are exploited for profit and control; what are the social consequences and how do we resist? The exhibition Happily Ever After shines a light on how different spheres—private and public, emotional and economic—have been woven together in contemporary society.
The works in Happily Ever After operate like a prism in constant movement that affords new points of entry and perspective. The exhibition invites reflection on how emotions can open up futures by emphasizing the importance of resistance in the form of authenticity and community, and how we choose to act in relation to each other.
In conjunction with the exhibition, a richly illustrated catalogue is published by Malmö Konstmuseum and Mousse Publishing, with newly written essays by the curators and author Nina Björk, as well as presentations of the works and the artists, designed by Andréason & Leibel.
Malmö Konstmuseum’s ambition is to continuously provide new perspectives on its collection and to bring to the fore artworks, artistic practices, and themes in order to be able to reflect upon and analyze critical contemporary questions and problems. Through its urgent theme, the exhibition Happily Ever After illustrates the relevance of the collection, how it can be mobilized for a broad audience and, not least, art’s ability to provide perspective and create counter-images.
Graphic design: Andréason & Leibel