Konstnärshemmet (A Home for Artists)

18 April – 16 May

Lisa Stålspets


poster a3


Exhibition and publication launch of A Home for Artists (Konstnärshemmet), part 2.

There is a certain order. A movement pattern in the parquet. People have walked here. Wheelchairs and walking frames scrape marks into the varnish. The summer sun bleaches the walls. The couch has been pushed to the other end of the room, the bookcase has been moved half a meter to accommodate more wheelchairs. There are dark silhouettes on the wallpaper where the furniture used to stand. The walls show what it looked like originally. The floors and the doors betray what people are doing. The wood is creaking, the hinges squeak. All day long the house whistles and sings about the people that live and move about there. (Lisa Stålspets, A Home for Artists, part 2)


A System of Order and Confusion

The Home for Artists (Konstnärshemmet) is a facility for elderly artists and cultural workers in need of nursing care. The home is built on the precarious foundation of Social Democratic order and a solid dose of social commitment. The basic concept of the resourceful group of artists that founded the home was that none other than the artists themselves were to own the house they would inhabit in their old age. Everything would be arranged to accommodate the residents and allow them to retain their identity as creative, thinking and working individuals. “Care” can be read on the white shirt of the young artist who works double shifts to earn a living here, but the facility’s basic values are dignity and respect. This is the uncompromising testament of the now senile Astrid, the home’s original founder and leader. Life and art have always been a confluent whole for the home’s residents, and although hands and mind may begin to fail, work continues to occupy the body. Part two of A Home for Artists allows the building itself to emerge more clearly. The institution shapes its residents, and when one body is carried out, another grows into the house.

Stålspets’ narrative is built on fragments and objects, trivialities and existential gravity. The realism with which the text portrays the care situation glides effortlessly into the unrestrained surrealism of a sculptural installation or the sombre expressionism of a painting. When Astrid tears the geraniums into shreds, Stålspets pastes the pieces together into a collage. Or is it actually the other way around? Stålspets’ method may best be described by the title of one of her own paintings – as a system of order and confusion. Confusion here must be understood as part of the system, as a gesture beyond language that ruptures the realism of everyday situations. Reality, as we know, mostly consists of that which cannot be articulated. Stålspets constructs a space in which everything is converted into signs, everything can be read as text. Within the bounds of this space, a painting is not merely painterly, but an object that engages the potential to see what is not being said, and the eye as an agent of thought.

Lisa Stålspets (born 1978, Stockholm) has an MFA from the Trondheim Academy of Fine Art. She has exhibited in both solo and group exhibitions in Sweden, Finland, Norway and Germany. Her work is included in the collection of Statens Konstråd ( (Public Art Agency Sweden), Trondheim municipality and Levanger Art Association. From 2011 until 2013 she was contributing editor for the art magazine Måg. Her publications ”In Each Sign Sleeps a Monster” and ”A Home for Artists” were presented at the New York Art Book Fair in 2014. She was awarded the NTNU artist prize from 2014 to 2015, and recently had a solo exhibition at NoPlace gallery in Oslo.



English translation: Thilo Reinhard http://www.reinhard.no

Graphic design: Joana Bruno


Konstnärshemmet Part 1 and Part 2 can be purchased in Swedish and English at LevArt. To book please contact us by email: levart@levanger.kommune.no