Curated Projects

Dr Kristian Häggblom’s curatorial interests are inspired by transdisciplinary art practices and contemporary lens-based work with an emphasis of site-specificity and cross-cultural engagement. When Häggblom first moved to Japan in 1999 he soon co-founded and co-curated RoomSpace gallery with Warren Fithie on the second floor of a tiny Izakaya in Omoide Yokocho (known as “Piss Alley”) in Shinjuku, Tokyo. Amongst many local artists, they had the privilege of exhibiting the work of German photographer David Steets and fellow Australian artists. While studying in Tasmania he received an Exhibition Development Grant from Contemporary Art Services, Tasmania, to curate the Japanese-Australian exhibition Paper Bridges which was part of Ten days on the Island festival in 2005. Häggblom has curated several large-scale cross-cultural exhibitions that have notably included the work of French photographer Mathieu Bernard-Reymond, Melbourne-based sound artist Philip Samartzis, Japanese artist group Chim↑Pom and respected Japanese photographer Risaku Suzuki. The exhibitions that Häggblom has curated often experiment with both exhibition locations and merging disciplines. More recently this has evolved to the photobook and exploring new modes of presentation possibilities. 

Review of David Steets at RoomSpace by Monty DiPietro from the Japan Times:
http://www.assemblylanguage.com/reviews/Steets.ht

 

2018

In 2018 Häggblom curated Tsuka: An Exhibition of Contemproary Japanese Photography at the Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne, and the Museum of Innocence, Mildura. The project used Japanese ‘tsuka’ monuments of atonement as the starting point for visual investigations by a selection of artists that work with still and moving photography and the photobook. The artists made both literal and lateral responses to the notion of ‘tsuka’, ultimately addressing the question: is the act of taking, making and exhibiting photographs, a form of ‘tsuka’ in its own right? The exhibition includes an ongoing and dedicated website that acts as a research repository and includes a downloadable catalogue.

Artists: Risaku Suzuki, Kazuma Obara, Tomoki Imai, Kenji Chiga, Mayumi Hosokura, Chikako Enomoto, Hiroshi Hatate, Daisuke Morishita, Mayumi Suzuki, Hajime Kimura, Yusuke Yamatani, Go Itami, Yoshinori Mizutani, Asako Narahashi, Shingo Kanagawa, Yuji Hamada, Hiroyuki Takenouchi, Hiromi Kakimoto, Yoshikatsu Fujii, Masako Tomiya, Kosuke Okahara, Keiko Nomura and Yasutaka Kojima.

Supported by The Japan Foundation, Sydney.

Media: photographic and archival prints, video, chromogenic and digital projections and photobooks.

www.tsukaproject.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Installation images: Matthew Stanton

 

 

Dr Kristian Häggblom was the co-founder and head curator of Wallflower Photomedia Gallery that was located in Mildura, Australia. The gallery was established to highlight and create further readings of photography within a regional context and showcase work otherwise unseen in Australia. The gallery aimed to present the work of artists using lens-based mediums from all over Australia, locally and from the world. WPG also aimed to initiate curated projects and run workshops, seminars, screenings and lectures. The first WPG initiated project, ___on this site, was exhibited in June 2013 (details below) and saw a select group of photographers respond to the same location. The gallery exhibited work from Japan, Finland, America, Canada, Italy, China, Russia, Mexico, England, Poland and Germany. In 2015 WPG established a relationship with Photobook Melbourne and presented a curated selection of photobooks at Mildura Arts Centre and hosted several associated exhibitions including Yaakov Israel's The Quest for the Man on the White Donkey.

The physical gallery was discontinued at the end of 2015 and WPG now functions as a facilitator of projects that include exhibitions and expanded activities. Between 2016 - 2017 WPG worked with Mildura Arts Centre to facilitate two projects by important mid-career Australian artists: Warwick Baker's Belanglo and Hoda Afshar's In the Exodus, I love you more (see below).

Media across exhibitons: photographic and archival prints, installation, video, chromogenic and digital projections, sound, found/collected objects, t-shirts and photobooks.

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Aftet the closure of the gallery space in Mildura, WPG has initiated several projects including two through a partnership with Mildura Arts Centre.

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

 

2015

Installtion views: Matthew Stanton Deep North

 

Installation images: Matthew Stanton

 

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2012

The Lost & Found: Family Photos Swept Away by the 3.11 East Japan Tsunami project was initiated by Munemasa Takahashi and Hiroshi Hatate in Japan and Dr Kristian Häggblom in Australia. It was a profoundly moving exhibition of collected photographs recovered from the devastation following the earthquake and tsunami and subsequent nuclear catastrophe that took place in the Tohoku region in 2011. The tsunami not only swept the harbour away, but also houses, cars, trains, etc. and many people lost their lives. Although no longer in the media, people in this region are still in great need. These photographs remind us of their presence and make us aware of their silent voices. The exhibition also gives us an opportunity to think about the relationship people have with their photographs.

Initially, the Lost & Found project was attempting to return pictures from the collection to their owners by cleaning, cataloguing and creating a digital database of the photographs. Many images were too badly damaged and can not be returned; rather than discard them, the project team decided to exhibit the imagery and give people the opportunity to see these photographs in the belief that they carry powerful messages. The project continues to exhibit internationally and raise important funds.

Media: found photographs, editioned posters and video.

Centre for Contemporary Photography

Wallflower Photomedia Gallery

 

 

 

2012

___on this site, Wallflower Photomedia Gallery, Mildura

Artists: Warwick Baker, Paul Batt, Thomas Breakwell, Kristian Haggblom, Siri Hayes, Katrin Koenning, Sanja Pohoki and Louis Porter

___on this site project engages a number of initiators who will nominate a specific location then invite a group of image-makers to produce a work based on that location. The initiator site could be a mountaintop, street corner or waterway, it is a place of known or unknown significance which each group responds to.Wallflower Photomedia Gallery has invited several initiators from across Australia to select artists and nominate a particular location which will be the subject of their work. The result will be a series of exhibitions of varied images of one place that visually and conceptually uncover and expand the possibilities of the medium.  ___on this site raises questions about authenticity, originality and the creation of place. The first project was initiated by Kristian Haggblom in Victoria and the participants made varying and interesting images based on Kororriot Creek that runs through the western suburbs of Melbourne, see the images HERE!

 


 

2011

The Kar-Rama Motel Project, Mildura Palimpsest #8, The Kar-Rama Motel, Mildura

Artists: Chim↑Pom (Japan), Tuomas A. Laitenen (Finland), Tuomas A. Laitenen (Finland) x Kristian Häggblom, John Vella, Warren Fithie, Kate Cotching, Luci Marcuzzo, Sara Oscar, Keith Armstrong, Brendan Lee, Elliot Howard & Modus Operandi

Supported by Arts Mildura

The Kar-Rama Motel Project worked with the Palimpsest #8 theme of “Collaborators and Saboteurs” across 14 rooms in a functioning 60’s style Motel. The 11 local, national and international artists created site-specific art works that ranged from video, sculpture, interventions, photography, sound and performance. Artists attempted to raise the memories and visions we all have of these transient spaces and punctuate the everday architecture and decor.

The Kar-Rama Motel Project a the lauch as part of Mildura Palimpsest #8. Exterior: Chim↑Pom, Interior: John Vella. Images: Shayne Hill 


 

2008 - 2009
 

re-socialization: The Wentworth Gaol Project as part of the Murray Darling Palimpsest #7 - Displacement, The Old Wentworth Gaol, N.S.W.

Artists: Juan Ford, Brendan Lee, Paul Wood, Philip Samartzis, Sangeeta Sandrasegar, Colin Langridge, Shay Minster, Neil Fettling & Peter Peterson, Shaun Wilson, Richard Grigg, Tsuneyoshi Nobata (Japan), Kate Cotching, Lee Salomone, Kate Vivian, Geoffrey Charles Edward Brown, Kristian Häggblom and Siri Hayes

Supported by Arts Mildura

The word re-socialization – especially in a penal context – is often equated with “brainwashing”, though it involves all kinds of social influences for positive, neutral and negative assimilation and accommodation into an ideal society. The Wentworth Gaol Project was a form of anti/re-socialization that turned the notion of an “ideal” society on its head and explored the Palimpsest #7 theme – Displacement. Completed in 1881, The Old Wentworth Gaol is an important architectural model used throughout Australia and was utilised until 1927.  Following this it was used by the local high school for human science lessons. Its most infamous inmate was bushranger Captain Starlight. Left dormant for many years, nowadays it’s a popular tourist attraction that boasts paranormal activity. The Gaol project took place in the cells of both the men's and women’s blocks in addition to the courtyard with intremedia site-specific works many that were powered and connected by solar electricity.

http://www.artsmildura.com.au/palimpsest_archived_2009/index.asp

Colin Langridge, High Voltage Rock 'n Roll, solar-powered neon

 


2009

AUSTRALIA?, Mildura Arts Centre, Victoria

Artists: Angelica Mesiti, James Newitt, John A. Douglas & Lane Cormick

Curated by Brendan Lee & Kristian Häggblom

Through the work of four contemporary Australian video artists this exhibition questioned ideal notions of Australianess through an analysis of the country's history, politics and culture. Works were exhibited in an installational mode to break with the usual single video projection format.

 


2005 - 2007Silent Ruptures, 24HR Northern Territory Contemporary Art Centre and Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne

Artists: Mathieu Bernard-Reymond (French, based in Switzerland), Yoshiro Masuda (Japanese) and Kristian Haggblom

Supported by Pro-Helvetia Foundation, Switzerland, and Monash University, Melbourne

Silent Ruptures is exhibition of photographs that reveal subtle, though poignant moments of interaction between humans and their surroundings. From different points of the globe each artist reflects upon the particularities of carefully selected places: Haggblom captures the vastness of the American West, Masuda creates a dense yet isolated Osaka and Bernard-Reymond reveals dream-like northern European tourist destinations. While these images originate from real places, the artists have collectively created a heterogeneous space – a world that seems to exist as a fiction as much as it does a reality.

http://www.24hrart.org.au/archives/200801.html
http://www.ccp.org.au/exhibitions.php?f=20080830_Gallery_3

 

 


2006 - 2007promiscuous paul knight + kristian haggblom (sound by Philip Samartzis), Galerie Omotesando, Tokyo

Supported by the Australian embassy, Tokyo, and ART, Tokyo

promiscuous was an exhibition of staged portraits by two Australian photographers and was accompanied by a sound piece produced in Tokyo by Melbourne-based sound artist Philip Samartzis. A central work in the exhibition was a polystyrene-potted plant “borrowed” (and returned) from the local neighbourhood.

http://www.omotesando-garo.com/link.07/musa.html


2003 - 2005Paper Bridges - a conference of folding spaces, CAST, Tasmania

Artists: Takahiro Ando, Merric Brettle, Warren Fithie, Kristian Haggblom, Tomoki Imai and Tsuneyoshi Nobata

Supported by CAST and the Nomura Foundation, Japan

Three Tokyo-based Australian artists selected a Japanese artist working with similar themes and methodologies to form the curatorial premise for Paper Bridges. The exhibition examined the transference of information, particularly cultural product amongst the Asia-Pacific region. Paper Bridges also attempted to extend the reading of art within “white-cubes” beyond the gallery space by the use of intremedia and installation techniques.

https://www.castgallery.org/cast-living-archive/exhibitions/profile/79/Paper-Bridges

Tsuneyoshi Nobata, Grass (installation view under the gallery)


2004 - 2005outdooring: 6 australian photomedia artists, Gallery Senkukan, Tokyo

Artists: Simon Cuthbert, Siri Hayes, Kristian Haggblom, Paul Knight, Andrew McLaughlin and Selina Ou

Supported by the Australian Embassy, Tokyo

Beyond the "usual suspects" the Japanese contemporary art scene has little knowledge of what young artists and photographers from Australia are producing. This exhibition aimed at showcasing a small selection of Australian photomedia works otherwise – most likely – unknown to Japanese audiences.

http://arts.australia.or.jp/en/events/view/10/+Outdooring+Photo+Exhibition

 
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