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ART IS A DIRTY JOB BUT SOMEONE’S GOT TO DO IT

Artworks met up with talked-about artist Anna Tedestam a gloomy day in her studio at Konstfack in Stockholm.

3 min read

Anna Tedestam has not even graduated from the art school, yet art collectors and gallery owners shout for her creations. The 25-year-old who is interested in the abandonment of materials currently displays her first show with Mariefried-based POM Gallery.
Was there a pivotal moment when you decided to become an artist?
The moment at Kronobergs Art school, I understood that the work as an artist could be a real profession and not just something I would do for myself and keep ”in my own drawer.”
We are curious to hear about the process of making your work?
My paintings and sculptures coexist with each other as the paintings represent the places where the sculptures live. The sculpture that develops are both my idea, my sketch and my finish piece. I work material based and try not to refine the clay to be flawless. The marks of where the hands have worked are often left on the piece.  
Can you describe it?
My work has several parallel stories going on at the same time. I work partly with abandoned material like trash that I create into human attributes such as objects.  It shows how things are not what they are perceived to be at first glance. The story takes place in segments of memories and pure fiction. I have a passion for the connection between ”the human, the nature and the sculpture.”
What piece of your artwork would you like to be remembered for?
I’m still waiting for my master piece. I happen to never see things for what they are in the present. I have to go further to be able to look back and see it for what it was.
What is your greatest indulgence in life?
Working with my hands. I get euphoric when I’m on top of my creative process. Sometimes I get a rush of adrenaline. That’s when everything is in one big flow that keeps moving. Then I’m a joy to have around.
How often do you questioned your career path entirely?
Sometimes I think life would be easier if I had a ”normal” job, but I don’t have a plan B and I know that working as an artist is my passion. My expression and my art is important to me. “Art is a dirty job but someone’s got to do it.”
What is your daily routine when working?
I observe my work a lot. When I’m in doubt of what to do I discipline myself to keep working. My paintings are the first things I see in the morning.
When I sculpt and get stuck I paint and vice versa. I paint it over, flip it, tear the clay apart. It helps me move forward. I often write stories or stuff I think about on my way to Konstfack then I immediately start to work in the material. But I’m also very tired and stressed out cause I think I can conquer the world in one day.
If you could work within a past art movement, which would it be?
Expressionism, where the artist’s emotions are shown and the choice of color has a meaning or during surrealism, because it plays with people’s ideas of what objects truly are.
How would you define beauty?
I like beauty in the unexpected, like cracks in something that should hold together. Figuratively and mentally, things that are a hundred percent perfect lose my interests. 

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