This year, the Degree Exhibition has been curated by Emily Fahlén and Asrin Haidari whose method is to dig where they stand and, through dialogue with the surrounding context, understand the site’s specific relationships, historical connections, conflicts and opportunities.
The exhibition is taking place in every imaginable nook and cranny of the school – in the basement, library and Mandelgren lecture hall, in corridors and studios. As a visitor, we want you to be able to move freely between the different spaces. The school’s various disciplines are separated in order to provide some clarity over the diversity of expressions that is Konstfack.
In the works by 179 students, it is of course difficult to trace a common theme, but they include an interest in translation as an artistic practice, the language of emotions, the slow processes of craft and the role of design in the age of climate change. At the same time, we have actively chosen to look for where in the school the critical discourses take place, in which spaces and from which perspectives they occur. One such example is the POC student collective Brown Island. The cross-disciplinary group arranges exhibitions and has recently published a handbook with lessons on decolonising processes in educational environments, Brown Island in the White Sea: A Handbook for a Collective Practice. As part of the Degree Exhibition, we have, in dialogue with the group, allowed texts from the book to sneak into the exhibition’s infrastructure. With this intervention, we as curators wish to highlight a greater issue about a school’s historiography and how initiatives such as these can rub off on an institution’s existing structure. What stories are hidden in the school’s architecture, systems and inhabitants?