The art of Scandinavia in LA

One of the things I miss about living in London is the access to countless galleries, museums and the art fairs I frequented. It was a bit of an adjustment not having quite so much at my disposal when I first relocated to LA, not least due to the Pandemic!

I was excited when I heard Frieze Art Fair, which originates from London, was coming to LA, curated in a large air hanger in Santa Monica. In fact, February definitely felt like the global art world had descended here with fairs such as Felix, Spring Break all coming to the city. After a couple of years of abnormal times, you could tell the atmosphere around town was light, positive and energetic—full of colour and life.

Art has always played a key role in the interiors I create. As I love to create light-filled open spaces, art becomes an important factor in how to dictate the mood and colour palette. I like to keep the space minimal, yet warm (Hygge) and I am often drawn to abstraction, pops of colour or muted colours with texture.

There are some incredible modern Scandinavian artists based out of Copenhagen whose work I have always admired, and in anticipation of an exciting development within Studio Haslund, I wanted to write about one artist who exhibited at Spring/Break Fair here in LA recently. Nina K Ekman, a fellow Scandinavian in LA. I have long been a fan of her work when Nina was based in Denmark and so now that we are both located in California I am excited to collaborate together on future projects.

Nina’s work is multi-disciplinary, exploring sculpture, drawing and painting (sometimes all in one). At the fair she displayed cactus like sculptures made of tufted yarn, with some attached to a dyed fabric stretched over a frame, or as standalone sculptures constructed out of wood. Nina’s works possess names such as Pleaze Touch Me, a tongue in cheek reference to the spiky nature of the cactus that contrasts with the soft yarn.

As an artist, Nina is focused on portraying the natural world through a unique dialogue of colours and tactility. Commenting on our modern lifestyles, sustainability is at the heart of her practice, as she uses waste textiles and excess yarn from the fashion industry to create her works.

Nina recently had a light and texture filled exhibition ‘Fading’. According to Nina, it is “An experience-based installation of fading palm leaves, where the audience are invited to enter the center stage. FADING consists of a 16 meter long runner and 52 tufted, knitted and crocheted palm leaf sculptures. [As you walk] The work becomes increasingly more white, faded and transparent and in the end, all that remains, are white threads.”

And, next month, she will be showing new works at Officinet, Copenhagen in an exhibition called Fragemented Totems.

Along with other Danish design curated by myself from other collections I have partnered with, Nina will be showing some of her works here with me in LA.

Get in touch for more info on the artist Nina k Ekman.

Walking through her exhibition Fading