|art.description.project||Tuija Lindström is one of the most influential photographers in Swedish photo history, partly through her own artistry and partly through her position as professor at Fotohögskolan (The Photo school) in the 90s – a period when photography underwent major changes. Not least, she came to help make photography an integral part of contemporary art, and that theory and feminist strategies and issues became increasingly important in photography education. As a woman and photographer in a male-dominated context, she was also an important role model for many younger women who became photographers and photo-based artists during the 90s and 00s. When Tuija Lindström passed away in 2017, it became clear that in Sweden there is no real infrastructure for preserving and managing photographers' life work. This is something that many have noticed, including Professor Karin Wagner at GU, who received money from the Riksbankenss Jubileumsfond 2016 for initiating a study on developing methods for collecting photographers' works. I joined the working group and have also worked on these issues in other ways, including Jens S Jensen's collected works and contributed to it being donated to the Gothenburg City Museum.
In order to draw attention to Tuija Lindström's work, the photography unit at the Valand Academy organized a symposium 2018 entitled: "Photography and Feminist Agency: A Symposium in Memory of Tuija Lindström." It was a way to both highlight the historical significance and identify contemporary challenges and opportunities from a feminist perspective. Among the participants were the photographers Elina Brotherus and Arvida Byström.
Not surprisingly, there has been a lack of activities from the arts and photo institutions and to help make Tuija Lindström's images visible, I and a former colleague, Joakim Geiger, decided to organize an exhibition in the framework of an established art dealer in Stockholm: Åmells . They had acquired a large number of vintage prints by Tuija Lindström and own one of the largest collections of her works. The gallery is centrally located in Stockholm and an exhibition there has the potential to attract both attention and many visitors. There is traditionally a skepticism about commercial interests in the art and cultural world, but my experience is that the situation is not so simple and that the commercial actors have an engagement, knowledge and opportunities that are not always found in institutional context, something the silence around Tuija Lindström's heritage testifies.
To move away from a purely monographic presentation and to raise questions about, among other things, how influence happen in art, we chose to invite an artist who stood Tuija Lindström close both personally and artistically: Julia Peirone. She had been a student of Tuija Lindström and for a few years in the 10s they had studios next to each other. Both worked with portraits and images of women where topics such as sexuality and identity are central. Together with Julia Peirone, we made a selection of her works in relation to the pictures from the 80's by Tuija Lindström that were included in the exhibition. The presentation created a dialogue between two related temperaments and driving forces, while at the same time the differences became prominent. There are differences that reflect, among other things, the changes in the aesthetic ideals that characterized photography – from the 80's small black and white images to the large color images that are characteristic of photography as contemporary art. As a result, the meeting between Lindström's and Peirones' work became a way of highlighting both the importance of personal-professional relationships, as well as the effects of the postmodern shift on photographic practice – a shift that was both part of and influenced by their different positions and generations. The exhibition was reviewed in Dagens Nyheter and helped create new thoughts and conversations about Tuija Lindström's work.||sv