Matts Leiderstam at Konstakademien, Stockholm, Sweden: Solo-exhibition

29 January - 5 March 2022

Matts Leiderstam has been working for a few years on a series of abstract paintings, all based on a form of grid that he learned already as a young art student. It is simultaneously a method and a tool that has been used throughout art-history by artists when composing / disposing image surfaces. In the exhibition, Leiderstam explores the visual structure of the grid and expands it in space, also reflecting on its significance in our time, whether it is the recent return to abstract painting, historically associated with the grid, or the amplification of the uses of the grid in the context of a quantum shift in our time of planetary- scale computing – in a culture dominated by the mediations of the screen, how might the grid frame what it is that we inherit?


The paintings are made on poplar panels and the installation in the rooms highlights them as object, where they are handled almost as if in a storage or archive. At the same time, they are exposed to alternative (queer) positionings that articulate an instability - in front of the eyes of the constantly connected viewer.


What does the grid do? is also a practice-based artistic research project funded with the support of the Swedish Research Council and located at Malmö Art Academy. The exhibition is conceived as the spatial / visual design of the research and the entire project is planned to be presented in the fall of 2022 in the form of a publication.


Matts Leiderstam is a visual artist working with painting, installation and photography, who seeks out stories connected to the very act of painting. Most of Leiderstam’s research-based work has since the mid-1990s been ”made after” older practices, as in an on-going conversation with art history and its materials, an investigation of sorts that has led him into museum storage facilities and archives. He has a keen interest in the circulation of artworks through commissions, acquisitions, theft and confiscation and what these things tell us. His work also deals with how ways of seeing change over time and he seeks out alternative – queer - stories connected to the act of seeing or looking at painting. For Leiderstam it is the very moment of encountering a painting that guides all the permutations his work might take within an exhibition space.


Matts Leiderstam, born 1956, lives and works in Stockholm and Malmö. Selected solo presentations include: Tomelilla Konsthall (2021) Andréhn-Schiptjenko, Paris (2021) and Stockholm (2018), Wilfried Lentz, Rotterdam (2017), Collectors Space, Istanbul (2016) Kunsthalle Düsseldorf and Grazer Kunstverein, Graz (2010). Salon MoCAB – Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrad (2008); Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe (2007); Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, Vaduz (2006); Göteborgs Konsthall (2005); Magasin III, Stockholm (2005).


Selected group shows: Salonul de proiecte, Bucharest (2021); Malmö Konstmuseum (2021); Borås konstmuseum (2020); Art Encounters Biennial 2019, Timisoara (2019), The 11th Shanghai Biennale, Shanghai, Generosity. The Art of Giving, The National Gallery, Prague (2016), Recto Verso, Fondazione Prada, Milan, In Search of Matisse, Heine Onstad Kunstsenter, Oslo (2015), 8th Berlin Biennale, Berlin, Ciclorama, Museo Tamayo, Mexico City (2013) Witte de With, Rotterdam (2011); Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art (2011); Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2010); Third Guangzhou Triennial (2008)


For more information about the exhibition, please visit