Art Review: HIT @ Swedish Ambassador's Residence

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 70 months ago
Art Review: HIT @ Swedish Ambassador's Residence
Kent Karlsson, Suck Muck, 2008 (courtesy of the artist)
Kent Karlsson, Suck Muck, 2008 (courtesy of the artist)
Kent Karlsson, Rekonstruktion, 1987. Image courtesy of the artist.
Kent Karlsson, Rekonstruktion, 1987. Image courtesy of the artist.
Kent Karlsson, Hitman, 2009 (courtesy of the artist)
Kent Karlsson, Hitman, 2009 (courtesy of the artist)
Kent Karlsson, Sculpture by the Sea, 2011 (courtesy of the artist)
Kent Karlsson, Sculpture by the Sea, 2011 (courtesy of the artist)

Art is often exhibited in weird locations but this has to be one of the most interesting venues we've come across. The Swedish ambassador's residence in not usually open to the public — primarily because she lives there and, like most people, doesn't want random passers-by wandering through her home. But she's making an exception at the moment, because two Swedish artists have taken over her dining room to display their art.

The two artists couldn't be more different in their styles but have both adapted the space available to complement their works. Emanuel Rohss specialises in abstract works where the paint and the canvas melt into one, providing the illusion of texture when in fact they are flat and smooth. They have an escapist quality to them, furthered by the fact that they lean against the walls wherever there is space — in one case, even placed in front of an existing painting.

In contrast, Kent Karlsson's humorous works have a more immediate impact, if you can find them. Tucked away next to a table sits a surreal sculpture of a dog with a red light bulb dangling from its mouth. Our favourite work of Karlsson's is not even inside the house but out on the balcony — a fitting location for a homage to the main character from the Hitman video games.

The magnificent setting for this exhibition is worth a visit on its own. Coupled with the opportunity to see works by two intriguing artists, it should prove difficult to resist.

HIT is on display at the Swedish Ambassador's Residence, 27 Portland Place, W1B 1QA until 26 October. There will be two public viewings on 11 (6-9pm) and 13 (12-5pm) October. For all other dates an appointment must be made, but all visitors are welcome and admission is free.

Last Updated 03 October 2012