One of my most memorable gallery experiences when I first moved to Mariestad, was with Galleri Baggen. I discovered the gallery on one of my early morning jogs and though it was closed the windows were inviting and almost encouraged art voyeurs to peek inside, so I did just that! There was one work in the window that caught my eye and several works that I could see that looked interesting. As I continued to scope out the space I noticed a wall of colorful abstracts that were warm and inviting, I wondered if they were created by an artist with connections to the Caribbean – then I thought for a moment maybe Spain seemed more realistic since I now live in Sweden. These works seemed familiar because the purely abstract forms reminded me of Joan Mirò and Wassily Kandinsky but there was another element that kept me going back to view the paintings. During this time, I was researching various artists and art movements from Sweden and I saw a loose connection to the unacknowledged pioneer of abstract art Hilma af Klint. Hilma af Klint, like Mirò and Kandinsky, painted pure abstractions but she incorporated another aspect that explored spirituality. The more time I spent with these colorful abstracts, I started to see a connection with nature, so every chance I had, during that very cold spring, I would visit the gallery and absorb the warm energy from these abstract paintings.
Finally, several months later I had the opportunity to meet this fictional expat Spanish artist now living in Sweden (at least this was the story I created in my head)! Art Crawl is one of the largest events in this small harbor town that takes place in the late fall during harvest celebrations. I walked around seeing several works and visiting so many art galleries and alternative gallery spaces hoping I would meet the artist whose work I had been admiring for several months. And finally, the last place on the map. I walked up a flight of stairs greeted by the most amazing colorful abstracts. And sitting on the sofa was a tall, lean woman with long black hair. I said hello in my beginner’s Swedish language explaining that I was not from Sweden but I had been living here for almost a year, studying the language and enjoying her group of works that were exhibited at Gallery Baggen. It turns out that she was definitely not from the Caribbean or from Spain, she was from Sweden and spoke English! We spent almost an hour, chatting about her work and the fact that she lived in Spain for many months. She lived in Fuengirola during the late 1980s. And it was upon her return to Sweden that she started to incorporate stronger and richer colors and this is her style today.
Fast forward two years later, Ylvla Dimetri is exhibiting online for the first time with D+C Contemporary! We are incredibly excited to feature her in the exhibition Spain on My Mind. You can see the exhibition online from Friday April 7 – Saturday May 27, 2017 and after that @dccontemporary via Pinterest.