Something very important happened that time ten years ago when Unni Askeland pulled the strongest card an artist has, and threw away her clothes in a video based on catharsis and genuine grief. In 2022, it is easy to see that something broke there. Call it a code, call it desperate, brave or whatever you want, but in retrospect one must nevertheless note that from there the own body became a very crucial tool and means of transport - whether it was about recording actual physical first-hand experience, or in-depth investigations of more universal myths. In these more recent works it is probably the later - she does not shy away from going all the way back to the very definition of sin where, in Eve's costume, she gives an apple to a more archaic Adam figure, or throws away her now 60-year-old female body in the water like another Ofelia, rather than going to a convent. It is the latest marking of a progression that will potentially never end. Because it is far too important. Contemporary art sometimes needs naked people, and sometimes with rather explicit behavior - I know this because I have been one of those archetypes who turned the video camera on myself the first time I did - but the vast majority of people give it up when they turn 40 , because suddenly the body is no longer so much to brag about. I myself waited until I was 50, the age when Unni Askeland started with it. One can of course speculate whether it will be the same at 60 as before 30, but that is beside the point; We're not playing art here, and if it wasn't necessary it wouldn't be done this way.
Tommy Olsson, Trondheim, September 8, 2022