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The Sick Rose
Gustaf Elias & Jenny Esbjörnsson

The Sick Rose



Title: The Sick Rose
Year: 2021
Size: 49x30 cm
Technique: Installation, photographic pigment print
Connected poem:
(Visions of blue)
O Rose thou art sick. / The invisible worm, / That flies in the night / In the howling storm: / Has found out thy bed / Of crimson joy: / And his dark secret love / Does thy life destroy.

From the suite: A Public Space of One’s Own (2021)

Through the eyes, coloured, the narrative is constructed, and status will be.

Society, experience, words and action colourise the human being through layering. A process in which colour no longer is innocent or just representing, but defining or even confining. When did the performativity of society add status to the coloured glow? A blue with a hint of red, and a red with a hint of blue, so close yet so far apart. Perhaps this is as close we can come an understanding of each other, come a clean and joint hue of color. Or as Woolf put it: ”It is fatal to be a man or woman pure and simple: one must be a woman manly, or a man womanly.”

This is an installation and image suite commenting on society through an alternative feministic lens. Laying bare what we have chosen to call 'hallways of opinions’ in Sweden. Expressed here in a story as much of personal as of public character, one about man and woman. Exhausted on, yet never sorted out. A story here told in photographs, referencing both to the 18th century English poet William Blake's 'Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience', and 20th century English feminist icon Virginia Woolf's 'A Room of One's Own’.

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