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Erika Stöckel Sweden

I am inspired by the presence of my own body in different situations – in the swim house, in the
mirror or in the bed. My medium is sculpture and ceramics my main material. The sculptures may
seem to come from a fantasy world, but speak at the same time directly to our own physics and
point to an inner dialogue. I am fascinated by bodily details and hiding places like foldings on the
stomach, dimples in the thighs and openings like mouth and anus.
During the past year I have been swimming regularly and been fascinated by the environment in the
changing room in the swim house. Here I meet other bodies, some with the clothes ready to leave
the room, others naked on their way to the shower. Old ladies, women of my own age, girls in teens
and mothers with their daughters. Here, the gaze is different, others’ gaze on me and then my own
look at others and myself. I experience a silent agreement, like a kind of solidarity. Nudity is not
sexualized or competitive, but rather forgiving and accepting. The body is just a body. The swim
house visits have made me want to investigate the body’s materiality in this environment. The
organic and soft body in contrast to the tiled, chlorinated, wet, occasionally dirty, changing room.
Humor is also important to me, especially when it comes to titles. I want to personalize them and
because of their organic and soft expression, they need hard names to toughen up. This is also a way
for me to create a closer relationship between myself and the sculptures.
My work is not linear, more like a flow where I create new objects that expand my own image
world. The sculptures are used and reused in different constellations, a bit like an archive where I
can collect different sculptures for different projects.