Anne Marte Overaa

Viva la tristeza, unlimited edition

Society today tells a story of happiness and success that sounds like a promise but is felt as a demand. Fulfill your dreams! Anyone can reach their goal, grasp their rightful position in life. When we fall short, the gap between ambition and results leads to feelings of failure, jealousy and anxiety.I want to dissolve this inhibiting daily quest by creating unpredictable moments, to allow people to wriggle out from underneath the pressure of external expectation and embrace the befuddlement.

1. Drawing Utopias: As an artist, I often see myself as a teenager in the back of a car that I’m not in control of, listening to music through my headphones. Utopia is that place inside my mind, which allows me to envision things that cannot be.  I would say that I consider all art-practices as linked to Utopia in one way or another, because art is so connected to the world of dreams and ideas.

2. Dream Economics: My idea of a utopian scenario for creative artistic practice would be the artworld as a place for soft elbows with a strong ‘live and let live’ mentality. However, when reflecting upon this dream, I can see it has its dangers: that art could become disengaged, implosive, and perhaps increasingly uninteresting as it would not reflect the turbulence and overwhelming flow of material that the world outside provides, whatever its difficult hierarchies and pressures, provides. It may also be impossible to achieve, but lets not talk about that ;)
So meanwhile I strive to be able to preserve my own ability to stay focused and independent regardless of support from the outside. The work of an artist is like the one of researchers, we always have to convince someone to approve and support each step of our live’s work, it is a process of uncertainty. Constantly applying to keep your job, perpetually generating numberless applications takes a lot of energy. However, I cannot see a more decent alternative that could exist in the world we live in today. We can only strive for a fairer and more welcoming artworld, where diverse groups of people, unblinded by their privilege and aware of their responsibility, decide who will be granted the opportunities which make life as an artist possible.
Those of use who depend on those people in power must (in an utopian, or even simply more hopeful, future) start to discover their own position of power, and be prepared to take responsibility for their artistic lives, as well as artistic work.

Anne Marte  Overaa is a visual artist living and working in Malmö, Sweden.

Born in Bergen. Norway 1955.Educated at the Art Academy in Bergen.1978-82. Has worked as an artist since 2000. Between -82 and 1999 a mix of artist, mother and boatbuilder.

www.annemarteoveraa.se