Art + Research: The Body, Art and the Nation

1 Jun 2022, 17.00

Which roles have the body, art and art history played in the construction of the Swedish nation? A conversation between Hanni Kamaly and researchers from Stockholm University in connection with Kamaly’s exhibition.

When was the image of the Swede as white, blonde and blue-eyed constructed, and how is it reflected in art history? How has thoughts about racial biology taken shape in the Swedish art scene since the 19th century? What happened when the body, rather than cultural expressions, became the focus of nation-building? What did the ideological landscape look like among Swedish art historians and art critics around the time of the two world wars, and how has it shaped the Swedish art canon? THIS LAND 4 ALL, Hanni Kamaly’s current exhibition at Accelerator, serves as the point of departure for the discussion of these issues. 

Wednesday 1 June, 17:00–18:00

The conversation will take place in Accelerator’s café, in Swedish. It will be recorded for Accelerator’s podcast. No pre-booking required. Free admission.


Hanni Kamaly, artist
Jeff Werner, professor of Art History at Stockholm University
Peter Gillgren, professor of Art History at Stockholm University

Moderator: Therese Kellner, curator at Accelerator.

Read more about the exhibition THIS LAND 4 ALL

Inauguration of the Olympic Games 1912, Stockholm. Still from Hanni Kamaly’s film “THIS LAND 4 ALL”, 2022.


Hanni Kamaly is a visual artist based in Stockholm. Kamaly received an MFA from Malmö Academy of Art and has also studied at Bergen Academy of Arts and the International Art Academy of Palestine. Kamaly’s work has been exhibited in numerous institutions and spaces including 34th Bienal de São Paulo in 2021, Moderna Museet Malmö (2020), Interkulturelt Museum, Oslo (2019/20), coyote, Stockholm (2020), Lunds Konsthall (2019), Ginerva Gambino, Cologne (2019), Tegel, Stockholm (2019), Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2018/19), Luleå Biennial (2018/19), Galleri Ping-Pong, Malmö (2018) Ahrenshoop Kunsthaus, Ahrenshoop (2018), Malmö Art Museum (2017/18), Skånes konstförening, Malmö (2017), Almanac, London (2017), Inter Arts Center, Malmö (2016) Rupert, Vilnius (2016).

Jeff Werner is a professor of Art History at Stockholm University. His main interest is contemporary visual culture and his research has focussed on visual art, film, design and architecture. Werner has also published numerous books on what museums do and why. Previously head of research at Gothenburg Museum of Art, Werner has held the positions of professor at the University of Gotland, guest professor at the University of Minnesota and guest researcher at the University of Kansas and the University of California, Santa Cruz. Jeff Werner’s latest book deals with whiteness: Kritvit? Kritiska vithetsperspektiv i teori och praktik (2021). [White as Chalk? Critical Perspectives on Whiteness in Theory and Practice].

Peter Gillgren is professor of Art History at Stockholm University. His research focusses on Renaissance and Baroque art and on the theories and histories of the art historical discipline. Between 1998 and 2007, Gillgren was a lecturer of Art History at Gotland University. Peter Gillgren has published several books on: art and identity in 16th century Sweden; spectatorship and site specificity in relation to Federico Barocci’s art; and Michelangelo and multi-media. He is also doing research on the art historian Felix Horb, who was part of the Vienna school.