Jonatan Pihlgren, Beckers Art Award scholar 2023
This year Beckers Art Award, the yearly scholarship for young talent, and a grant of 200,000 SEK, was awarded to Jonatan Pihlgren, born 1993. He lives and works in Gothenburg. His amazing painting are on display at the museum from August 26.
Jonatan Pihlgren approaches his canvases and panels with a balanced mix of primordial painterly power and delicate sensitivity. The painterly narrative is expressive and dizzying in its intense and intuitive temperament. The focus is on people, animals and daily life, but in the safe and familiar milieu, somewhat surreal and totally uninhibited whims and caprices can manifest themselves. A world as seen through a dreamy tumble-dryer where everything takes a new turn, wild and dangerous, but at the same time intimate and contemplative.
Suddenly, colour and form ground to a halt, frozen on the spot, brittle and sensitive for a moment, and then quickly rush on to new adventures.
As an artist, Jonatan Pihlgren is at ease with himself, with an air of irresponsibility. He never flatters, but plays around with paint just as easily as when carving a wooden sculpture and conjuring a strangely messy object, all in the spirit of refreshingly unbridled rawness.
Jonatan Pihlgren is awarded the 2023 Beckers Art Award for the amount of SEK 200,000 because he is instinctively anchored in a narratively expressive tradition, but at the same time, in such an obvious way, he runs his own artistic race completely without a safety net.
Mårten Castenfors / on behalf of the jury
About the artist
Jonatan Pihlgren, born in 1993, lives and works in Gothenburg. In 2021, he took a master’s degree at Umeå Academy of Fine Arts. Pihlgren’s main medium is painting, but he also works with sculpture and performance. In 2022, he participated as one of three artists in the exhibition Järtecken at Gallery Verkligheten in Umeå, his wooden sculptures were included in the performance show Real Yellow at Atalante and he showed the exhibition Vargtimme at Gallery 54 in Gothenburg. This year, in addition to the scholarship exhibition at Färgfabriken, Jonatan Pihlgren will also exhibit at Market Art Fair and Höganäs Museum.
About the award
Beckers Art Award was established in 1987 and has since then proven to have a remarkable ability to identify a young talent on the brink of a breakthrough in their careers. The winner is awarded a grant, which from this year has been raised from 150,000 to 200,000 SEK, and a solo exhibition that has, since 2001, been arranged and held in collaboration with Färgfabriken.
Jenny Lindén Urnes, chairman of the board, Lindén Group; Mårten Castenfors, ny titel???, and Magnus Jensner, CEO Halland Art Museum
Photo: Fredrik Åkum, media use