Washed Out

apexart presents a winning Franchise exhibition in Stockholm
February 3 – March 2, 2011

Raeda Saadeh, Vacuum, 2007

Raeda Saadeh, Vacuum, 2007

Washed Out was a site-inspired exhibition held in Centraltvättstuga, a community laundry facility in Hökarängen, a typical Stockholm suburb built in the 1940s according to the utopian urban ideals of early social democracy. Decades later, this still functioning laundry facility shares its premises with a publicly funded art center, Konsthall C, and a small collection of vintage laundry machines.

In light of Sweden’s current political situation, many social democratic values have become lost in individualistic modes of living and transformed into symbols of the past. Far beyond a critique of the Swedish model, the notions of community and washing can be extended to address the action of ‘washing out’ portions of history that have been hidden from collective memory for one reason or another.

Within the site of a laundry facility, representing the faded ideals of social democracy, this exhibition registered the act of washing as a significant gesture for cleaning the collective memory, as well as the symbolic conflict between individual memory and experience. It is through recalling and critically engaging with specific historical moments that the process of ‘washing out’ can prevent memory from fading into oblivion.

Seeking resonance with this unique site, an international group of curators invited artists who used their personal experiences as a starting point on which to reflect on historical moments that have been ‘washed out,’ or purposefully erased from collective memory via domestic performed in unexpected contexts, rewriting history books, or rubbing out information from media images, among other actions.

Washed Out consisted of work exhibited above a functional common laundry, a residency lasting the duration of the project, and public programming positioning artistic practices in relation to collective memory.

Washed Out was presented by apexart as part of its Franchise program and was supported, in part, by Konsthall C and CuratorLab 2010/2011 at Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Design.

Featured Artists: Maja Bajevic, Daniela Comani, Stefan Constantinescu, Nadia Myre, Estefania Peñafiel Loaiza, Raeda Saadeh, Laercio Redondo, and Konsthall 323 (Frida Krohn and Ylva Trapp)

Co-curated with: Corina Oprea, Isabel Löfgren, Judith Souriau, and Valerio Del Baglivo

Washed Out @ apexart.org
Exhibition brochure

Images forthcoming.