2024-02-09 15:15Press release

The Wanås Foundation present art program 2024

Wanås Konst. Sweden. Wanås Konst. Sweden.

Wanås Konst | The Wanås Foundation Presents: The Ocean in the Forest 

Wanås Konst I The Wanås Foundation, is an international art destination and Sweden's largest sculpture park with 80 permanent artworks. The foundation is situated on the grounds of the Wanås Estate in Skåne, in the South of Sweden, easily accessible from Copenhagen and Malmö. The foundation’s main building houses a cafe and shop as well as the Studio, with creative workshop spaces and sometimes temporary art projects. For a longer stay, there is a boutique hotel with a restaurant on the Estate grounds.

Art Program 2024

Wanås Konst presents the two-part group exhibition The Ocean in the Forest, featuring works by international artists Lavanya Mani (b. 1977, works in Bangalore, India), Youmna Chlala (b. in Beirut, Lebanon; works in New York, USA), Evan Ifekoya (b.1988 in Iperu, Nigeria; works in London, UK), and Eduardo Navarro (b. 1979, works in Argentina). Born from a dream, the exhibition title opens a sensorial space for collaboration with the forest. The four artists have been invited to unfold the poetic title in site-specific projects. The forest, wind, and soil intertwine as a canvas for collective imagination through artworks that evoke the potency of collective action, dreaming, speculation, and storytelling as an antidote to planetary emergencies.

PART 1 - The Ocean in the Forest - Lavanya Mani

Lavanya Mani's solo presentation, Fables, reveals meticulously crafted and dyed textile artworks, many created for The Ocean in the Forest exhibition. At the center of the installation in the Studio gallery is "The Ark: Animals of the world complain to the Raven" (2018–19), a central work in the artist’s oeuvre, portraying animals seeking refuge from rising waters. Drawing from ancient mythologies, fables, historic colonialist trade, and present-day ecological concerns, Mani weaves a multilayered cautionary narrative of ecological catastrophe.

Opening: March 23, 10:00-16:00. Artist & Curator talk 2 pm. Exhibition period March 23 – June 23. Press preview: March 22, 11 am.

PART 2 - The Ocean in the Forest - Youmna Chlala, Evan Ifekoya, Eduardo Navarro

Part II of this year’s large group exhibition will open with new commissions in the sculpture park by Youmna Chlala, Evan Ifekoya, and Eduardo Navarro.

Youmna Chlala works with drawings, sculptures, and installations at the intersection of language, architecture, and fate. For this exhibition, she is producing a text work about the collective memory embedded in landscapes, fossils and dreams where oceans and forests meet. 

Evan Ifekoya is interested in the interplay between sound, architecture, place, and the human body. In the sculpture park, the artist presents an architectonic intervention in a tea pavilion with a thatched roof, presumably built in the early part of the 20th century, exploring the transformational power of light, sound, movement, and Black queerness.

Eduardo Navarro creates sculptural installations and moments that impact the senses and our understanding of the world around us. In the sculpture park, his work invites the wind, the forest, and visitors to experience a musical playground.

Opening May 4, 10:00-17:00, Press preview May 2 (with all four artists in attendance). Exhibition period May 4 – November 3.

Other Highlights
In response to the climate crisis, Wanås Konst strives to become an ecologically sustainable institution. This commitment involves reflection on its role as a producer of new site-specific artworks and steward of a “permanent” collection in a forest that doubles as a nature preserve and home to diverse creatures and plants. The Collection Highlights this year feature works by Martin Puryear and Kimsooja, each made for sites in the forest part of the sculpture park, reflecting the elements and shifting with the seasons in rhythm with their surroundings.

Martin Puryear: Meditation in a Beech Wood
Martin Puryear's monumental reed sculpture, “Meditation in a Beech Wood” (1996), nestled within the beech forest, will be restored this summer. Visitors are invited to witness the entire process and engage with the craftspeople involved. In September, the project will culminate in a seminar on September 5th, where the artist will unveil the remade sculpture. The transformative journey unfolds from mid-June to September.

Kimsooja: A Laundry Field
Kimsooja’s “A Laundry Field,” a work commissioned for Wanås in 2020 and acquired last year, graces the sculpture park this summer. Embodied in one hundred white sheets, adorned with monograms and lace, the installation sways gracefully in the wind, evoking reflections on homemaking, life, and death. The work will be on view from June 26 to September 29.

Wanås Art & Words Festival is an immersive and embodied literature festival, engaging all the senses, dedicated to delving into human kinships with other species, the earth, knowledge, traditions, and each other through art, conversations, creative workshops, nature walks, and culinary experiences. Following the success of its inaugural edition, Mycocosm, which explored fungi and mycelium networks in 2023, this year's festival will explore themes tied to the group exhibition, The Ocean in the Forest. The festival will span several weekends from September to October.

Wanås Art Club and the Studio

Throughout Easter, summer, and fall breaks, as well as other holidays, Wanås Konst offers daily creative drop-in workshops in the Studio. Wanås Konst also features an active Art Club for all ages. As part of a new initiative, Wanås Art Club is organizing a monthly Senior Art Circle and Art Club 15+, catering to members aged 15 to 18. In addition, Wanås Konst will host a "kollo" (day camp) specifically designed for teens aged 13 to 15 during the summer.

About Wanås Konst

Wanås Konst | The Wanås Foundation is a Swedish non-profit focused on the commissioning and exhibiting of site-specific contemporary art installations, the majority outdoors. Wanås is located in rural southern Sweden in a unique site with a large forest area, a medieval castle (home to the Wachtmeister family for 8 generations), and an organic farm. Every year the foundation commissions new site sensitive works by contemporary artists. The foundation’s permanent collection includes around 80 site-specific works by artists from all over the world and is housed in its sculpture park in a large forest, 18th century barns and farm buildings that surround Wanås Castle. 

The sculpture park and exhibitions program was initiated by Marika Wachtmeister, who began inviting artists to do art projects at Wanås in 1987. In 1995, she founded The Wanås Foundation which operates independently with an artistic director and dedicated team. The main barn houses Wanås Konst’s Shop, Cafe, and Studio - a flexible space used for creative workshops, learning activities, as well as talks, performances and temporary exhibitions. 

All revenue from ticket sales, shop and cafe is reinvested into art productions, collection care, and learning activities for kids and youth. The sculpture park is open year-round and the foundation offers educational activities serving around 10,000 children and youth during each school year. The Wanås Foundation is supported by Region Skåne, The Swedish Arts Council, Östra Göinge Municipality, foundations, sponsorships, and The Wanås Foundation Patrons Circle.

Wanås Restaurant Hotel, which Kristina Wactmeister opened in 2016, offers the opportunity for art lovers to spend the night with a view of Wanås castle, enjoy the sculpture park off hours, and savour breakfast and dinner sourced from the organic farm's own ingredients. Wanås Konst and Wanås Restaurant Hotel collaborate on special events such as Dining in the Wild, with curator-led tour followed by dinner in the sculpture park. For more info email: hotel@wanasrh.se