Gothenburg 400 years 2021


As part of the anniversary celebrations, the Hasselblad Foundation has initiated a multi-year photohistorical research project that, in 2021, will result in an exhibition, a historical anthology covering both photography and film, and a series of public events. Partners include Valand Academy, the University of Gothenburg, the Department of Cultural Sciences, GU and Göteborgs Konsthall.


The exhibition at the Hasselblad Center opens in early May 2021 and will run until mid-September 2021. Its starting point is the international photography exhibition shown at Göteborgs Konsthall in 1929 (organised by newspaper Göteborgs Handels och Sjöfartstidning). Presented here was a large range of artistic photography, professional portraiture and photographic applications in the sciences, including ethnography, botany, astronomy, physics, medicine, as well as in other areas such as the police, military, communications and advertising. This mix of subjects shows the proliferation of photography during the interwar period and furthermore the pictures reflect the visual culture in Gothenburg during the 1920s. The exhibition at the Hasselblad Center aims to highlight examples of this fascinating, yet relatively unknown, photographic and lens-based material in an innovative exhibition format.



Rolf Winquist

In dialogue with the photohistorical exhibition at the Hasselblad Center, Göteborgs Konsthall will be showing a contemporary art exhibition with corresponding themes and work, including archive material from the 1920s and 1930s. The exhibitions at the Hasselblad Center and Göteborgs Konsthall will be connected in a number of ways, including a joint exhibition catalogue.


The anthology, which highlights important points of interest and common areas of activity between photography and film during the interwar period, is a result of cross-discipline collaborative research between the Hasselblad Foundation, the Photography Department at Valand Academy and Film Studies at the Department of Cultural Sciences, University of Gothenburg. It is an international anthology with new texts by a dozen researchers in the fields of photography, film, art and media science, chiefly from Gothenburg and the rest of Sweden, but also other European researchers. Bringing together empirical and theoretical knowledge from film and photography enables an examination of the aesthetical, technical and social histories of these media, as well as modernist imagery, in a new way. Furthermore, in terms of scientific method, the aim is to develop cross-genre photographic and film historiographical perspectives that contribute to more empirically based knowledge about media and information.


The public events will include seminars, symposiums, panel discussions and artist talks.