Anna Wessman

Since the beginning of the twenty-first century, Anna Wessman has been working with combinations of sound and images, which include her speaking glass fibre cello. In her installation Du får inte säga att det är jag som har sagt det… (You Mustn’t Say I’m the One Who Said So), the central theme is the fear of speaking openly and saying what one thinks. Free speech is a fundamental democratic right. But what happens if we don’t make use of it?

In a room there is a stand with a microphone pointed at a stuffed squirrel on the floor. White unpainted placards have been leant against the walls and whispering can be heard from a loudspeaker. The whispering voice is asking us why we are so afraid of speaking, of laying claim to our place in the democratic public debate.

In Sweden we have become used to praising ourselves for our free and equal society. This is a message we have heard ever since we were small. But why is it that only certain people speak out loud in the public arena while others are too timid to express what they think and feel. The speech of the squirrel communicates frustration at the current climate of debate and calls for change, both in society at large and in our own attitudes as individuals to freedom of expression.

Anna Wessman

Born 1969 in Västervik. Lives and work in Malmö.


Malmö Art Academy, Malmö

Nordic Art School in Kokkola [FI]

Selected solo exhibitions

Salongen, Ystad Konstmuseum, Ystad

”Du får inte säga att det är jag som har sagt det…”, Wuthering Heights, Malmö

Carving as communication, Living Room D Lyx, Malmö

Selected group exhibitions

SISU, Kunstverein Rügen, Rambin [DE]

Open Music 2005, Ystad Konstmuseum, Ystad

Galleri 54, Gothenburg

Selected bibliography

Thomas Millroth, ”Svindlande hörselresor”, Kristianstadbladet, 2005-08-06.

Eric Sinclair, ”Med fokus på tidsandan”, Kristianstadbladet, 2005-06-27.

Sisu (exh. cat.), Kunstverein Rügen, Rambin, 2005.

More about this exhibition