10 February - 12 May 2024

Aslan Goisum. Prism

We now have the pleasure to present ‘Prism’, a solo exhibition by the Berlin-based artist Aslan Goisum. Born in Grozny, Chechnya, in 1991 and educated in Moscow, Ghent and Amsterdam, he is a distinct voice within the new generation of European artists who emerged in the 2010s.

From time to time, Lunds konsthall dedicates its entire building – one of the first purpose-built municipal art galleries in Sweden, designed by the architect Klas Anshelm and inaugurated in 1957 – to an internationally active artist who has previously not been featured at such scale in our region. This programming strand, which has brought artists from all corners of the earth to Lund, dates back to the earliest period of operation in the 1950s and ’60s.

We now have the pleasure to present ‘Prism’, a solo exhibition by the Berlin-based artist Aslan Goisum. Born in Grozny, Chechnya, in 1991 and educated in Moscow, Ghent and Amsterdam, he is a distinct voice within the new generation of European artists who emerged in the 2010s.

Although Goisum has been visible on the biennial and museum circuit in Europe and beyond for more than a decade, this is his first major exhibition in Sweden. We are glad to be able to feature this incisive practice with its uncompromising commitment to form – and how form can grow into understanding – at this very point in time, in the current global context.

Goisum studied both architecture and visual art, and he is known for video installations, sculptures and works on (and with) paper. These artistic formats have all been incorporated, in more or less hybridised form, into ‘Prism’. The exhibition comprises ten works, four of which have been conceived and produced for this occasion and are therefore premiered at Lunds konsthall.

Among these new works (all 2024) is Prism, the video sculpture for the rear hall that lends the exhibition its title and consists of three seven-metres-tall LED screens showing footage of a young male performer’s body and joined together as a freestanding prismatic shape. This is Goisum’s newest work, so new that its video elements were being edited as the exhibition catalogue went to print.

The other new works are the sculptural installations Star, Table and Wheel, which employ basic geometric shapes – the cylinder, the rectangle, the five-pointed star – as components of metaphoric images informed by Goisum’s observations of how imperial visual codes continue to shape everyday reality in what might nowadays be referred to as northern Eurasia.

Spear (2023–24) is a new version of an installation with books wrapped in pale pink paper (and subjected to almond-shaped high-precision scalpel cuts) that was premiered at Emalin, the London gallery that represents Goisum, last year.

Object (2022) was first shown at P////AKT, an independent exhibition space in Amsterdam, and consists of seven fence-like sculptures in black powder-coated steel. This imposing installation is the first thing visitors to Lunds konsthall will encounter as they enter the front hall. The conceptual and visual trigger for it was Goisum’s visit, during a research trip for an as yet unrealised film project, to a cemetery outside Almaty in Kazakhstan.

The other existing works included in the exhibition are the short video Touch (2023), the longer and more elaborate (although also non-narrative) video Scythian Journey (2019) and two wall-based installations consisting of enamelled steel plaques with house numbers and street signs, respectively, that have been salvaged from Grozny: Numbers (2015) and Fearsome (2011–ongoing).

Warm thanks to the artist and his studio and production team for the rewarding collaboration, and also to Emalin.

The guest curator for this exhibition and author of the catalogue essay, Anders Kreuger, used to be exhibitions curator at Lunds konsthall and now directs Kohta, an artist-initiated private kunsthalle in Helsinki. His previous engagements for Aslan Goisum include, among other things, the artist’s first museum solo exhibition ‘People of No Consequence’ at M HKA, the Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, in 2016 and his solo exhibition ‘Crystals and Shards’ at Kohta in 2018.

Image: Aslan Goisum, Object #5, 2022. Powder-coated welded steel, 235 × 191 × 131 cm. Photo: Chun-Han Chiang. Courtesy the artist and Emalin, London 

Curator: Anders Kreuger
Photo: OMN