© Elin Wikström

Elin Wikström

The Showroom is pleased to announce that Elin Wikström will present a new project at the gallery.

Elin Wikström creates "activated situations" in her practice. These involve projects sited within the public domain, that question the habits, behaviour and opinions of individuals and society in general. Her projects cause a disruption in the everyday flow of events that force us to reassess our understanding of accepted codes of behaviour, value systems and social conditioning.

Wikström's projects often centre around a form of transaction or exchange. For example, a recent project (made for the exhibition "Money" at the Kulterhuset in Stockholm) looked at the symbolic significance of money as a means of exchange, value and control. "What Does the Figure Say" involved the artist counting one hundred kronor notes throughout the 43 days of the exhibition. This action could be observed by visitors to the gallery on a monitor, while it was also possible to follow the count on a website. The artist stopped counting at 10,294,000.

However, it was unclear as to whether Wikström had been counting the same block of bills over and over again, or if she had actually amassed that amount of money during the project. Through the suggestion of a sleight of hand, the project questioned our belief that economics is an exact science or natural law. Wikström demonstrated that the trust that we put in numbers, counting and accountancy is absurd, as figures reveal nothing about the value of people, objects and events.

For The Showroom, Wikström will present "RETAiliATOR", a project that examines how our individual freedoms alter on a daily basis as we move between public and commercial spaces. On entering the retail environment, we are no longer seen as political subjects; what counts is the money we spend and where. Stores compete for our custom by providing a "positive" shopping experience; attractive stores, motivated staff etc..

Wikström will perform a series of actions sited in central London that will test this system by investigating the ability of major high street chains to react when something out of the ordinary occurs and the customer retaliates against the restrictions of the imposed structure.

Exhibition: 30 June - 8 August 2004
Gallery hours: Wed-Sun 1 - 6 pm

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