Ture Sjölander

1981 - 1982. Elected Secretary and Member of the Board of the National Association of Professional
Swedish Visual Artists - K.R.O - Konstnärernas Riks Organisation Stockholm - with over 6.000 members.

1979 - 1986. Elected as the first Director and Chairperson of the Board, while Curator/ Administrator of
the former Swedish National Artist Organisation, VIDEO-NU, Stockholm, an Art Laboratory for new
electronic technology financially assisted by the Swedish Government and the Stockholm City Council (
200 individual and 15 corporate members)

Museum of Modern Art, Stockholm, Sweden. "…this artist is already well represented in our collection",
David Elliott, Director, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden. October 6, 1999.
National Museum, Stockholm, Sweden.
Gothenburg's Art Museum, Gothenburg, Sweden.
Sundsvalls Museum, Sundvall, Sweden.
Family of Charles Chaplins private collection Switzerland.
Swedish National Television collection Stockholm, Sweden.
The Australian Embassy in Beijing, China.
The City Council of Changchun, China.
James Cooks University, North Queensland, Australia
Qingdao Municipal Museum, China. Sculptures:
'97 China Changchun City, International Invitation Exhibition of Sculpture - Permanent installation of
two-of-a kind, 3 meters marble-sculptures, at the Culture Square.
Alvdalens County collection, Sweden. Stone of Alvdalskvartsit.
County Council, Falun City, Sweden. Stone of kvartsit.
Thirty public artworks in Sweden and in addition; international corporate and private
Collections in USA, Australia, Europe and China.

The Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Arts - Top Project Grant 1975 for pioneering electronic artworks
since 1966 and for the development of art&technology, 'video-art'.
The Ministry for the Arts, Development Grant, Oueensland State Government, Australia, 1992.

The Royal Fund for Swedish Culture - Video&Television installation/experiment, 1966.
The Swedish Government Ministry for Arts, Project Grant for New Media Experiment1962.
Stockholm City Council, Department for Arts, Project Grant - experimental photo- graphics -
lightpainting, 1962.

Expanded Cinema by Gene Yomgblood - Published by Studio Vista Ltd 1970. Pages; 331 - 334.
Introduction by R. Buckminster Fuller.
"Digitala Pionjarer", by Gary Svensson, Linkopings Studies in Arts and Science, Linkopings University,
Sweden. Publisher: Carlsson Bokforlag, 2000.ISBN 91 72 03 992 2. ISSN 0282-9800.211 pages. Sjolander
pages: 64-65, 104- 113, 129.
"New Media in Late 20th-Century Art", by Dr. Michael Rush, Harvard University, Thames&Hudson ,
Publisher 1999. Pp. 92 -93 of 224 pages. ISBN 0-500-20329-
The Collection Of The Qingdao International Art Exhibition - China 1999. Catalogue; pp. 11, 296, 316.
Published by Chinese Artist's Organisation. ISBN 7-5305-1101-7
Art and Australia ( June 1992 Winter/issue, 3 full pages ) - Fine Art Press Pty Ltd. Australia.
The Courier Mail, Queensland, Australia. Saturday, January 25, 1992; 'Artist to fine tune the relevance
of art', by Sonia Ulliana.
Essere (Vol. 4 1968) by Pierrluigi Albertoni. Tribunale di Milan, 'La Mec-Art' by Pierre Restany (pp. 13, 15
17, 64, 65)
Video (Monthly Magazine - January 1979) Linkhouse Publication Group Pty Ltd. UK, 'Video Art at New
Castle' by Mandy McIntyre (pp.32-33)
Konstrevy (Volume 1) 1963 'Photographic Development' by Kurt Bergengren. (Pp. 10 - 13, and original
cover art: 'Ready Maid/Pop Art'. Publisher; Bonniers Bokforlag Sweden.
National Swedish Encyclopaedia - ( 'Focus' ) 1967, Publisher; Bonniers Sweden. See 'S' for, Sjölander
Other articles in Europe, Australia, China and USA have been published as well as radio and television
programs (e.g. catalogue text for installations/exhibitions) by writers as: Pierre Restany, Paris, Öivind
Fahlström, N.Y., Kristian Romare, Belgium, Prof. Björn Hallström, Stockholm, Pontus Hultén and others.
Sundsvalls Museum, 1961, (regional Art Gallery Sweden) - Light paintings. Debut. Solo
Exhibition. Catalogue foreword by Oyvind Fahlstrom.
White Chapel Art Gallery - London, UK. 1963. Light paintings. Selected group exhibition.
Lunds Konsthall (Regional Fine Art Gallery in South Sweden, Lund) 1965.
Simultaneously installation of an outdoor exhibition in Stockholm on billboard space of Monumental
size. Solo installations.
The 5th Biennale of Paris, France 1967. Selected group exhibition. Catalogue foreword by Pierre
Gallerie Apollinaire - Milan, Italy 1968, Invited to exhibit with contemporary all-Italian artists. Selected
group exhibition
Serpentine Gallery, London, UK. 1975. Selected group exhibition
The Galleries, Biddick Farm Arts Center, Washington Tyne and Wear, New Castle. UK. 1976 and 1979.
Selected group exhibition/installation incl. Bill Viola, Ed Emshwiller etc.
Museum of Modern Art, Stockholm Sweden, 1981. Electronic Art, International Exhibition incl.
seminars. Selected group exhibition.
International Video Art exhibition KULTURHUSET Stockholm Sweden 1982. Selected
group exhibition incl. Nam June Paik, Bill Viola, etc etc
Museum of Modern Art - Stockholm Sweden, 1985. 'Swedish Contemporary Art' - Six months
exhibition. Selected group exhibition.
Ethnographic Museum, Stockholm, Sweden, 1987 and 1988. Video/multimedia installa-tion; 'Body
Paintings Papua New Guinea' - 'The South Pacific Festival of Art', Solo installation.
Gallery Umbrella, North Queensland, Australia, 1991. 'Space - the Image of Wealth 1'.
Solo installation.
1997 - China International Sculpture Invitation Exhibition in Changchun, Jilin province. 'Peace,
Friendship and Spring'
Group exhibition. Foreign artists from 10 nations. Permanent installations of stone sculptures at the
Culture Square in the City of Changchun.
1999, CHINA, Qingdao, " Trancentury China International Masterpieces Exhibition '99, August.
Paintings. Qingdao Municipal Museum.
From the Experimental Television Center http://www.experimentaltvcenter.org/ture-sjolander
Break-through work
"The role of Photography" B/w Commissioned by the National Swedish Television in 1964.
Multimedia/electronic experiment. 30 minutes. Televised 1965.
"TIME" - b/w, Commissioned by the National Swedish Television. Electronic paintings televised
in September 1996. 30 minutes. A video synthesizer was built. The same technical system was later
used to create MONUMENT one year later, 1967.
In principle this process is similar to methods used by Nam June Paik and others, some years later..
Nam June Paik visited Elektronmusikstudion in Stockholm July/August 1966, during the festival "Visions
of Now" and static pictures from TIME were demonstrated for Paik.
TIME is the first ’video art'-work televised. It was created by manipulation of the electronic signals and
'exhibited/installed’ through television, televised.
At the same time painting on canvass and paper was made from the static material, in silk-screen
prints, for a large numbers of Fine Arts Galleries and Museums 1966, as a matter of irony in ’limited
editions', signed and numbered.
MONUMENT b/w 1967. Electronic paintings televised in five European Nations; France, Italy, Sweden,
Germany and Switzerland in 1968. MONUMENT reached an audience of more than 150 million viewers.
The televised electronic painting was developed into an extended communication project, multimedia
artwork including creation of tapestries, silk/screen prints, posters, LP/Record Music, paintings on
canvass, and a book, exhibited in several international Fine Arts Galleries. See text in Gene
Youngblood’s book "Expanded Cinema" 1970.
"SPACE IN THE BRAIN" 1969, 30 minutes. First color electronic signal original painting. Described in
media as a Space Opera. Based on authentic material delivered from NASA. Space in the Brain was a
creation dealing with the space out there - the space in our brains and the electronic space. It was
contemporary to Clarke's 2001, except that the Picture itself was scrutinized and focused, in SPACE IN
THE BRAIN. Static material from the electronic paintings was also this time worked out into other
medias and materials.
A bestseller posters was produced 1970 and distributed worldwide by Scandecor, Uppsala, and an
LP/Record named: "Man at the Moon" with Hansson & Karlsson, which was also Televised 1969, weeks
after the Moon landing, commissioned by National Swedish Television.

Reactions to the break-through work
Extracts from Catalogue text for Ture Sjolander
" Je ne connais pas Ture Sjolander. En automne 1967 un long voyage en Amerique du Sud ne m'a permis
de visiter la 5 `eme Biennale de Paris, ou il exposait, qu'a l'extreme fin de la manifestation. Mieux vaut
tard que jamais. J'ai ete frappe par les oeuvres de Sjolander. Par leur esprit vraiment moderne. Par
soon instinct sur, son usage poetigue des donnees technologiques des mass media: une liberation
iconographique au niveau de la technologie de l'information, du langage de la communication de
Elle nous concerne tous, elle est plus historique que l'histoire, plus sexuelle que le sexe, plus criminelle
que le crime, plus objective que n'importe quel processus d'objectivation. On atteint la notion d'une
Expressivite de synthese, liee aux phenomenes d'alteration et de transformation des structures
visuelles initiales. Cette alchimie de la vision a trouve sa pierre philosophale. Le plomb des definitions
theorigues et standard de l'image animee s'est mue en vif-argent: le mercure des distorsion libres.
En creant une distance optique par rapport au phenomene mental
d'enregistrement de l'image, l'enterprise de Ture Sjolander apparait comme un magistrature, le cure
d'hygiene de la vision. Elle bouleverse nos habitudes de perception reflexe, elle stimule notre
conscience et notre gout, elle nous associe au destin structurel de l'image animee.
Dans une societe en plein mutation, ou le peril majeur consiste sans doute dans la mecanisation des
esprits et la generalisation d'une passivite sensorielle, d'un modernisme-reflexe saturant l'individu,
l'enterprise collective de Ture Sjolander, associant l'art et la technique dans le but d'assurer la survie
poetique de notre vision, est une enterprise pleinement humaine, que dis-je, humaniste au sens le plus
moderne du terme "
Pierre Restany, Paris, oct. 1968
Excerpts from letter from Sherman Price, RUTT ELECTROPHYSICS, March 12, 1974, to the International
Section of Swedish National Television, Stockholm, Sweden.
I am writing a detailed magazine article about the history of video animation.
From literature available I gather that a video film program, "MONUMENT", broadcasted in Stockholm
in January, 1968, was the first distortion of video scan-line rasters achieved by applying tones from
wave form generators.
This is of such great importance - historically - that I would like to obtain more detailed documentation
of the program and of the electronic circuitry employed to manipulate the video images.
I understand from your New York office that there may have been a brochure or booklet published
about the program.
I will be happy to pay any expense for publications, photocopies or other documents about the
program and its production - particularly with regard to the method of modulating the deflection
voltage in the flying-spot telecine used.
“AVideo synthesis" is becoming a prominent technique in TV production here in the United States, and I
think it will be interesting to give credit to your broadcasting system and personal for achieving this
historic innovation.
Letter from the Manager of THE PINK FLOYD, 1967, September 11th, 1967.
Dear Messrs Sjolander & Weck,
Having seen your interesting Stockholm exhibition of portraits of the King of Sweden made with
advanced electronic techniques I have been struck by the connection between this new type of image
creating and the music-and-light art presented by The Pink Floyd.
I think that your work could and should be linked with the music of The Pink Floyd in a television
production, and I would like to suggest that we start arranging the practical details for such a
production immediately. With all his experiences from filming in the USA and elsewhere I also feel that
Mr. Lars Svanberg is the ideal man to help us make the film.
Please get in touch as soon as possible.
Yours sincerely
Andrew King

Ture Sjölander
Swedish painter and photographer Ture Sjolander found the communicative breadth and fluidity of
video imagery immensely appealing. Working with Bror Wikstrom, he created Time, shown on National
Swedish Television in 1966. Time was a half-hour program of "electronically manipulated paintings."
According to Chris Meigh-Andrews, author of History of Video Art, Sjolander "worked with TV broadcast
engineer Bengt Modin to construct a temporary video image synthesizer which was used to distort and
transform video line-scan rasters by applying tones from waveform generators."
What is more, Sjolander and Wikstrom seem to be the first artists to have done so. When Nam June
Paik visited Sjolander in July and August of 1966, he saw images from Time that almost certainly
spurred him onward in his own image-processing experiments. Further linking the relationship between
video and painting, the images in Time were also produced as limited-edition, signed and numbered
works silk-screened on canvas.
Sjolander's work the next year, Monument, was done in collaboration with Lars Weck and featured
image-processed "portraits"--via distorting signals and electronic filters--of the Mona Lisa, Charlie
Chaplin, Hitler, Picasso, and the Beatles. Broadcast in five European nations, the program, backed by a
reverberant sci-fi soundtrack of vibraphones and organ washes, was seen by more than 150 million
people. These electronic paintings were also made into a variety of still images including tapestries, LP
art, paintings on canvas, and posters.
Sjolander, Wikstrom, and Sven Hoglund's 1969 Space in the Brain extended Frank Malina, Jordan
Belson, and other moving-image artists' fascination with inner and outer spaces. The artists
manipulated still images of the Apollo 11 mission--given to them by the American government--into
full-color abstractions to produce a "space opera" set to searing acid rock by Hansson & Karlsson.
The piece makes use of close-ups of an eyeball, much in the manner of Kubrick's "Stargate" sequence in
2001: A Space Odyssey, before layering in shifting, rotating washes of hot pink, searing yellow, and
electric blue forms, concluding with the overlaying of those video shapes on top of still images of deep
Monument (1967) © 2011 Gregory Zinman
The Artist who invented Computer Animation, Aapo Saask, 2004. Translation from an article in Swedish
from Konstrevy
On an island aptly named Magnetic Island off the coast of Australia, a Swedish artist lives in exile. Just
like so many others in today's media-landscape, he was first praised and then brought to dust.
However, he has left a lasting imprint on the world. As early as the 1960's, he made the first electronic
animation. Had he been an inventor, he would have been celebrated as a genius today, but because he
is a predecessor in the world of art, things are different. In that world, the great ones often have to die
before they are recognized.
We all know how Disney's famous cartoons were made: thousands of drawings, filmed in sequence.
Even today some films are made this way. However, electronic animation has opened up a new world
within the film industry and it has also made computer games and countless graphic solutions possible
in business and science.
Pixar, which used to be part of Lucasfilm and then sold to Steve Jobs in the late 1980's, made the first
completely computer animated film called "Andre and Wally B" in 1983. The first feature length fully
animated movie was Toy Story from 1995. It was made by Pixar and distributed by Disney. Disney had
already started to use computer animation in Little Mermaid from 1989, and then on through
Aladdin, Lion King, Pocahontas, etc. In those fantastic movies the pictures were however first drawn on
paper and then scanned into computers for painting and cleanup and superimposition over painted
Decades earlier, in 1963 Nam June Paik Paik and Wolf Vostell presented the earliest experiments with
distorted TV-images. They placed thirteen televisions prepared for the distortion of images on the floor
among many other objects at the Parnass Gallery in Wuppertal. This "event" is retrospectively
identified as the beginning of video art.
From 1965-1968, Nam June Paik and Yud Yalkut work with the first experimental creation of electronic
images, based on the manipulation of transistors and resistors of a television set, with what was called
a video synthesizer. These abstract images - waving, and swinging and changing color, surging forth at
random as a result of maladjustment – show that a monitor can also be an instrument and not just a
simple receiver of images. Their experiments were first shown in 1971.
Already in 1965, Ture Sjolander’s electronically manipulated images were broadcasted by the Swedish
Television (SVT) and later by other TV-stations in Europe. Among other things, Ture Sjolander was
experimenting with the question of how much the portrait of a person could be changed before it was
unrecognizable, something which has pioneered the amazing morph-technique that is used today.
Gene Youngblood, who, alongside with Marshall McLuhan, is the most celebrated media-philosopher of
the era, devoted a whole chapter in his book Expanded Cinema, 1970, (Pre face by Buckminster-Fuller)
to the experiments of the SVT. Expanded cinema means transgression of conventions as well as mindexpanding
transgressions and new definitions. Sjolander’s broadcasts were not technically
sophisticated, but they were ground-breaking.
The film mentioned by Youngblood is "Monument" (1968) by Ture Sjolander and Lars Weck. The other
televised pioneering animations were "TIME" (1965/66) by Ture Sjolander and Bror Wikstrom and
"Space In the Brain" (1969) by Ture Sjolander, Bror Wikstrom, Sven Hoglund and Lasse Svanberg.
Whereas most of the modern-day artists fade into oblivion, Ture Sjolander has found his place in the art
history by the making of those films.
Ture, a lad from the northern city of Sundsvall, had instant success with his opening exhibition at the
Sundsvalls Museum 1961. He moved to Stockholm in the beginning of the 1960's. At an exhibition in
1964 at Karlsson Gallery his imagery upset the public so much that the gallery immediately became the
trendiest place for young artists in Stockholm.
In 1968, he created another scandal, when the film "Monument" was televised in most European
countries. For a couple of years, Ture Sjolander was celebrated in France, Italy, Great Britain and the
USA. In Sweden there was a lot of jealousy. The Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of
Sweden, to name a few, bought his works, but the techniques he worked with were expensive and after
a few years, he found himself without resources. Instead he started to work with celebrities such as
Charlie Chaplin and Greta Garbo. They taught him that exile – mental and/or physical - is the only way
to escape destruction for a creative genius. He moved to Australia.
Ture Sjolander's works include photos, films, books, articles, textiles, tv-programs, video-installations,
happenings, sculptures and paintings – all scattered around the Globe. Tracing will be a challenging and
exciting task for a future detective/biographer and web-archaeologist's.
But mostly, his work consists of a life of questioning and creation. This is what sets him aside as one of
the great artists of the 20th century.
Another forerunner in the art world, the internationally celebrated Swedish composer Ralph Lundsten,
says in an interview in the magazine SEX, 5, 2004: "In those days (the 19th century), a painting could
create a revolution. Today people look idly at all the thousands of exhibitions that there are. ’Hmm. Oh,
really. How clever he is’, and they yawn… If I were a visual artist, and if my ambition was to create
something new, I would devote myself to the possibilities of the computer."
In 1974, Sherman Price of Rutt Electrophysics, wrote to the Swedish Television Company (SVT): "Video
Synthesis is becoming a prominent technique in TV production here in the United States, and I think it
will be interesting to give credit to your broadcasting system and personnel for achieving this historic
He was referring to Ture Sjolander's revolutionary work in the 1960's. No one at the SVT could at that
time imagine the importance that this innovation would have for television, and Sweden therefore lost
a lead position in the computer-development (later called IT) business.
Amongst the younger generation of computer animators, few know that they have a Swedish
predecessor. Many engineers were probably working away in their cellars in those days, trying to do
the same thing, but Sjolander was the first person to show his results on the air. If any of you would like
to have a look at the Godfather of animation, you can find a good glimpse of him by googling. Today, he
has a fascinating web-presence.
He did not seek to patent his inventions and he has made no money from it. However, he has made it
to the history books as one of the great precursors of art - and perhaps also of technology - of the 20th
For the past decades, Ture Sjolander has mostly lived in Australia, but he has also worked in Papua New
Guinea and China.
After a couple of decades of silence, in the spring of 2004, Sjolander's groundbreaking work was shown
at Fylkingen, an avant guard media and music hide out in Stockholm

In September/October 2004, some of his recent paintings are to be exhibited at the Gallery Svenshog
outside of Lund, Sweden. This was to commemorate the forty years that have gone by since his last
(scandalous) exhibition at Lunds Konsthall. Many artists take a pleasure in provoking the established art
world. Ture Sjolander also provokes the rest of the world.
Aapo Saask, 2004-09-12
Öyvind Fahlström, about Sjolander, 1961
We live at a time when borders between the art forms are constantly being redrawn or abolished.
Poets arrange their poems as pictorial compositions or record spoken sequences of sound which can
hardly be distinguished from musique concrète. Composers are able to build a complete composition
around the manipulation of a spoken voice. Artists sometimes create pictures by striking off newspaper
photographs or mixing conglomerates of discarded objects and painted areas into something which is
neither picture nor sculpture. Puppet theatre is performed by setting mobiles in motion in the
constantly changing light effects on a stage.
The border between photography and painting is no longer clear, either, and it is easy to understand
why this is so. Tinguély, the creator of mobiles, started out by making a form of reliefs with moving
parts, powered by a machine placed at the back of them. After a while Tinguély began to wonder why
he could not equally well show the play of cog wheels and driving belts at the rear and let “machine"
and “shapes" become a united whole.
Similarly, some photographers have asked themselves why the action of light on photo paper and the
development baths could not become a creative process comparable with the exposure of a motif; why
camera work and darkroom work could not become one.
Among those photographers we find Ture Sjölander. Among those photo graphic artists, as he calls
them, who feel dissatisfied with the dialectic of the traditional photographer's relationship to his motif:
when he searches for his motif, he is the sovereign master of it, choosing and rejecting it C. At the very
moment that he touches the trigger, he has become enslaved to the motif, without any possibility
(other than in terms of light gradation) to do what a painter does; reshape, exclude, and emphasize in
the motif.
This subjection to the motif does not have to be disrupted by eliminating the motif. The photographer
simply needs to remove the limits to what is permitted and what is not allowed. To let the copy of a
photo remain in the water bath for an hour is allowed (if you want to keep the motif). But leaving it
there for a couple of days is the right thing as well (if you want to let the motif diffuse into
deformations soft and silky as fur). Scratching with a needle or a razor blade is making accidents with
scratches into a virtue, and so on.
In addition, there is the chance of manipulating a figurative or non-figurative motif by copying different
pictorial elements into it, by enlargements which elevate previously imperceptible structures to the
visible level, even up to monumental dimensions. The tension between scratching lines of light into a
developed (black) negative the size of a matchbox and enlarging it on the Agfa papers the size of a bed
sheet. This is where the photographer has at his command tricks of his art which the painter lacks, or
at any rate seldom uses.
But on the other hand, is the photographer able freely to experiment with the color? Yes, he is; if he
brushes paint on to the negative and makes a color copy.
He may also, like Ture Sjölander, brush, pour, draw etc. on a photo paper, possibly with a background
copied on to it; with water, developing or fixing sodium thiosulphite solutions, ferrocyanide of
potassium and other liquids. In that case the result is a single, once-only, art work. In this way he is able
to achieve a tempered and melting color scale of white, sepia, ochre, thunder cloud grey, verdigris,
silver and possibly also certain blue and red tones.
In this area, however, it seems everything still remains to be done, but one single photographer's
resources are not enough for the experiments to be conducted widely and in depth. Sweden has
recently inaugurated its first studio of electronic music.
When will photographers and painters be given the opportunity to explore this no-man's-land between
their time-honoured frontlines?
But can photography, in principle, be equal to painting? Is not the glossy, non-handmade character of
the photo an obstacle? People have argued in a similar way about enamel work, but that technique is
now recognized as totally and completely of a kind with the painted picture. If we adjust the focus of
the “conventional painting concept" when we are looking at photo painting, we will perchance discover
that in its singular immaterial quality it can possess new and suggestive value.
Öyvind Fahlström, Stockholm, 1961. Translation from Swedish by Birgitta Sharpe
Professor Dr. Bjorn Hallstrom, TIME, 1976
In the short history of video animation the Swedish artists TURE SJOLANDER and BROR WIKSTROM are
the pioneers. Their television art programme TIME (1965 - 1966) seems to be the first distortion of
video-scan-line rasters achieved by applying tones from wave form generators.
For almost ten years they have been using electronic image-making equipment for a non-traditional
statement. It must be kept in mind, however that SJOLANDER and WIKSTROM have a traditional and
solid artistic background. Howard Klein likens the relationship between the video artist and his
hardware to that between Ingres and the graphite pencil. It should be added that real artists like
SJOLANDER and WIKSTROM have a natural relationship to any image-making equipment. In that
respect they differ from most cameramen and tape makers and they may come back some day as
pioneers in other fields of art.
In fact they have already surpassed the limits of video and TV using the electronic hardware to produce
pictures which can be applied as prints, wall paintings and tapestries.
They have generously provided new possibilities to other artists, they are not working alone on a
monument of their own.
It is significant that the Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Arts has decided to support SJOLANDER and
WIKSTROM financially.
Professor Björn Hallström, Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Art, Stockholm - 1976
Kristian Romare, MONUMENT, electronic painting 1968 by TURE SJOLANDER/LARS WECK
We create pictures. We form conceptions of all the objects of our experience. When talking to each
other our conversation emerges in the form of descriptions. In that way we understand one another.
Instantaneous communication in all directions. Our world in television! The world in image and the
image in the world: at the same moment, in the consciousness and in the eyes of millions.
The true multi-images is not substance but process-interplay between people.
"Photography freed us from old concepts", said the artist Matisse. For the first time it showed us the
object freed from emotion.
Likewise satellites showed us for the first time the image of the earth from the outside. Art abandoned
representation for the transformational and constructional process of depiction, and Marcel Duchamp
shifted our attention to the image-observer relation.
That, too, was perhaps like viewing a planet from the outside. Meta-art: observing art from the outside.
That awareness has been driven further. The function of an artist is more and more becoming like that
of a creative auditor, investigator and transformer of communication and our awareness of them.
Multi-art was an attempt to widen the circulation of artist's individual pictures. But a radical multi-art
should not, of course, stop the mass production of works of art: it should proceed towards an artistic
development of the mass-image.
MONUMENT is such a step. What has compelled TURE SJOLANDER and LARS WECK is not so much a
technical curiosity as a need to develop a widened, pictorially communicative awareness.
They can advance the effort further in other directions. But here they have manipulated the electronic
transformations of the telecine and the identifications triggered in us by well-known faces, our
monuments. They are focal points. Every translation influences our perception. In our
vision the optical image is rectified by inversion. The electronic translation represented by the
television image contains numerous deformations, which the technicians with their instruments and
the viewers by adjusting their sets usually collaborate in rendering unnoticeable.
MONUMENT makes these deformations utterly visible, uses them as instruments and renders the
television image itself visible in a new way. And suddenly there is an image-generator, which - fully
exploited - would be able to fill galleries and supply entire pattern factories with fantastic visual
abstractions and ornaments.
Utterly beyond human imagination.
SJOLANDER and WECK have made silkscreen pictures from film frames. These stills are visual. But with
television, screen images move and affect us as mimics, gestures, convolutions. With remarkable
pleasure we sense pulse and breathing in the electronic movement. The images become irradiated
reliefs and contours, ever changing as they are traced by the electronic finger of the telecine.
With their production, MONUMENT, SJOLANDER and WECK have demonstrated what has also been
maintained by Marshall McLuhan: that the medium of television is tactile and sculptural.
The Foundation for MONUMENT was the fact that television, as no other medium, draws the viewers
into an intimate co-creativity. A maximum of identification - the Swedish King, The Beatles, Chaplin,
Picasso, Hitler etc, - and a maximum of deformation.
A language that engages our total instinct for abstraction and recognition.
Vital and new graphic communication. A television Art.
Kristian Romare, Sweden 1968 (from the book MONUMENT authors Ture Sjolander&Lars Weck)
Tapes available at Swedish Television. Also available at http://vimeo.com/turesjolander
"The Role of Photography" 1965 (17 minutes)
"TIME" 1966
"SPACE in the BRAIN" 1969

 World Conference on Culture Stockholm Sweden 1998
The Impact of New Technology on the Development of Culture
a. An annual 3-week internation satelliteTV high-tech art festivaL
b. Commercialise peace via satellite
c. An international lobby group: to connect all TV-systems of the world
- SATELLITE is the medium
- COMMUNICATIONS is the means
- PEACE is the message

For the creation of paintings, works of graphic art, free-standing sculptures and reliefs there is a fairly
limited number of materials and techniques; these have changed relatively little during the last 300
Even though new materials and methods have developed, the artistic techniques in the areas of
painting, graphic arts and sculpture have kept their traditional character. A painting on canvas today
has a technical structure largely similar to that of a seventeenth century painting.
The possibility of giving pictorial expression to the artist's message is however not tied to traditional
methods. For the majority of people in the industrial countries, television, video newspapers and
advertising have become the dominant transmitters of pictures and visual images. Television and video
in particular have come to extend more and more widely through the global development of
distribution systems, and are frequently used as a medium for other art forms, such as film, theatre and
pictorial arts.
In this context it should be emphasized that it is journalists, above all, who have been recruited to these
areas and who have therefore had an opportunity of exploiting the particular and specialized resources
which television and video have at their disposal. The fact that pictorial artists occupy a subordinate
position would seem partly to be connected with the fact that art schools still limit their educational
role to the traditional creation of static images.
The work of artistic/technical development presupposes that artists have access to specialized technical
studio equipment.
Television has been in existence now for almost 50 years. During this period a significant number of
cultural programmes have been made by artists. Very rarely, however, have these artists produced
works directly intended/designed for this medium. Although television per se is a pictorial medium, it
has primarily been used to transmit words. The stress has been laid on 'tele' or the
transporting/transmitting aspects of the medium, and comparatively little attention has been paid to
the conceptual element of 'vision'; that is to say those aspects having to do with the language of the
images themselves.
If one looks back on the history of art and makes comparisons with the visual aesthetics used in
television today, one is struck by the fact that the greater proportion of all television production today
uses visual aesthetics dating back to the 16th century. As an example we may mention the aesthetics of
Cubism: this implied a visualization of several different points of view being given simultaneous
expression and coinciding with the discoveries by modern physics of Time and Space being only relative
and not absolutely fixed structures.
Cubism dates back more than 50 years, and yet, in a television programme a few years ago it would be
unthinkable to use Cubist visual aesthetics.


This situation is however changing rapidly at the present moment. During the last decades or so, a
series of international artists have initiated the construction of electronic image laboratories, where
they pursue the development of new art forms through experimental techniques.
Those international artists who have access to modern electronic technology have been given the
opportunity of realizing, by a creative process, their ideas concerning a truly visually-oriented language.
Artists with many different points of view and modes of expression have begun working with
computer/electronics/video, taking their point of departure in their previous knowledge and training.
Painters, sculptors, musicians, photographers, composers, choreographers and others have approached
this medium with their own particular talents and creative methodology and all have contributed to
media development in the area of television film and video and to a visual language characterized by
greater awareness and creativity.
International electronic music studios have conducted its work of development in music for nearly 30
years, those artists who have been engaged in similar work within the visual arts field are mostly still
obliged to manage completely without any corresponding access to electronic equipment.
In a number of countries considerable sums have been invested, for many years, in facilities for
practical experimentation in both the visual and audio areas.
The creation of electronic images (sometimes called 'video art'), is an artistic development of visual
language. Modern 'electronics' can convert sound vibrations into visual structures, and image
components into patterns of sound, thereby giving visual expression to basic processes such as growth
and change. The essential definition of 'video art' is based on the manipulation of video signals. Apart
from the use of video to realize a series of images in a temporal sequence, artists can also exploit
television as a physical, sculptural, object. At galleries they make 'installations' or 'environments' by
placing one or more monitors or giant screen projections in specific, related positions. Video cameras,
too, 'incorporate' the spectator into the work. In this way, it is possible to explore perceptions of what
is seen, as well as the psychology of seeing, in a living context.
An electronic image laboratory, however, should not be limited to video. Another related area is the socalled
computer animation (computer-assisted and/or computer-generated images). This technique is
based on advanced forms of programming and opens up hiterto unimagined possibilities of free-image
With the aid of electronics and laser the static image, too, will have an interesting development in the
fields of painting and graphic arts. Attempts in this direction have been demonstrated in the form of
'video paintings', or more precisely, electronic painting and computer art.


Those who claim that we live today in a visually oriented culture are probably word-blind. Today's
visual art and visual media, with the possible exception of painting, still bear a master-slave
relationship to elite literature and popular journalism - in the beginning was the Word. The word is
power. People who can express themselves well and forcefully in speech and writing, more or less
automatically achieve positions of power... while people who express themselves well in pictures, must
often support themselves through stipends and other grants.
The producers of words dominate the cultural columns of newspapers, control official cultural policy
and the most important visual media. And generally exert a damnably important influence on society.
The arts in Sweden are infested by the speech chorus and the clatter of typewriters. Authors write
screenplays and become film directors. Journalists become television producers (or programme
directors) and make TV-films. Our entire culture is beset by word-producers. Authors, journalists,
investigators, letter-writers, polemicists and critics. Who, in fact, knows anything about pictures? And
why do we understand so little about visual semantics? Photography and motion pictures have existed
for 100 years, television for 50. Despite this, pictures have not attained more than a purely illustrative
function. Why? Probably, because most of our pictures are created by Word-people. In fact, roughly
half the items on TV today could just as well be broadcast on radio instead.
Ture Sjölander 1973

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