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Umeå Academy of Fine Arts / After Tomorrow at Sunrise

2024-05-24 to 2024-08-18

After Tomorrow at Sunrise presents works by Ángela Abuja Miranda, Ida Boman, Josefine Borgström, Simon H. Danielsson, Maja Gregor, Juni Liv Uma (Maria Bengtsson), Beatriz Martins, Laoise Ní Ghríofa, Janina Renström, Raphael Vargas and Ágnes Vokatá, all of whom are graduating from the master's programme at the Umeå Academy of Fine Arts. Principal supervisor and curator: Annika Eriksson, artist and professor. 
The degree show at Bildmuseet is the culmination of a period of intensive work and research. During the master’s programme, the students have developed their artistic practice and explored the history and contemporary social relevance of art and its current themes and status. For you as a visitor, the exhibition offers insights into the discourse of contemporary art, its techniques and materials. 
In addition to their individual works in the degree show, the students this year have also created a collective work: a sculpture garden on the riverbank outside Bildmuseet. The exhibition’s title, After Tomorrow at Sunrise, refers to a line from Jarman’s sound poem and film Blue from 1993.

Annika Eriksson, curator

A recurring theme during my discussions with the students over their two years in the master’s programme has been the nature of the artistic process, how we can embrace it and welcome that which we are yet unable to analyse. This time-consuming, painful, yet utterly fascinating process is something all artists can relate to. It involves analysis but also the courage to let go, to trust in both intellect and intuition. This is crucial.

In addition to their individual works in the degree show, the students this year have also created a collective work: a sculpture garden on the riverbank outside Bildmuseet. The inspiration comes from one of many artistic practices we have engaged with, specifically the British artist, filmmaker, and gardener Derek Jarman (1942–94) and his remarkable, wild garden filled with plants and sculptures – a manifestation of pure creativity. It reveals to us the essence of why we artists are driven to create art and why it is so vital to embrace openness and collaboration. The exhibition’s title, After Tomorrow at Sunrise, refers to a line from Jarman’s sound poem and film Blue from 1993.

Collective Work

The graduating students and their professor, Annika Eriksson

The Garden, 2024
Mixed media

The Garden is a collective work by the artists in the graduation show and their professor, artist Annika Eriksson. Their sculpture garden on the riverbank outside Bildmuseet is inspired by the British artist, filmmaker, and gardener Derek Jarman (1942–94) and his distinctive garden on a gravel plain by the sea, in the shadow of a nuclear power plant.

Artists and Works

Ángela Abuja Miranda (b. 1998, Madrid, Spain)

Pero no podemos simplemente sentarnos y mirar nuestras heridas para siempre, 2024
But We Cannot Sit Here and Look at Each Other’s Wounds Forever
Painting: watercolour, gouache, ink, oil paint, wax and ceramics

Shallow Heart Lonely Hunter (esto no eres tú pero tiene una foto tuya), 2024
Shallow Heart Lonely Hunter (This Is Not You but It Has a Photo of You)
Sculpture: wax and oil paint

Will we be able to recover from the pains we carry? Or will we just stay here forever, recreating ourselves on them? These are questions that Ángela Abuja Miranda, with a non-traditional use of materials and techniques, tries to answer with her work. Through impossible colours and representations of the body, the artist creates a dialogue between pain and desire. Her work in the exhibition consists of two parts, a painting and a sculpture.

The painting Pero no podemos simplemente sentarnos y mirar nuestras heridas para siempre [But We Cannot Sit Here and Look at Each Other’s Wounds Forever] references Sandro Botticelli’s painting Scenes from The Story of Nastagio degli Onesti from 1483, which in turn pictures a story from The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio. Giving a new vision of the characters, Abuja Miranda unfolds a tale of self-destruction and generational trauma.

With the sculpture Shallow Heart Lonely Hunter (esto no eres tú pero tiene una foto tuya) [Shallow Heart Lonely Hunter (This Is Not You but It Has a Photo of You)], she touches upon the constant human need for desire, like an inextinguishable fire in the chest.

‘With redemption through love, the work wants to invite the viewer to reflect and let their feelings go, whatever their background or backstory. Because it is never too late to let go. Because we cannot sit here and look at each other’s wounds forever.’


Ida Boman (b. 1981, Umeå, Sweden)

stammar tiden märgen talet, 2024
Stems the Time the Marrow the Speech
Installation: Birch, steel wire, wall paint, text, epoxy, hair, stone
and river clay

Ida Boman is interested in slow and subtle processes, both human and non-human, where contrasts between large events and details can evoke a sense of absurdity. With a transdisciplinary approach, she explores questions about how our knowledge is made and the importance of incomprehensibility in such processes. She seeks the poetic potential that might be found in all kinds of relations, where she, through poetry, is looking for what she calls elastic places and extended bodies.

The installation stammar tiden märgen talet [Stems the Time the Marrow the Speech] is based on the felling of a birch in the mountains of Västerbotten and the following reflection on whether it really is a mountain birch if it is tall and straight and does not deviate from the normal appearance of a birch. The installation consists of the fallen birch together with sculpture and text. In her work, the artist has been inspired by the patchy markings of the tree where clusters of lichen spread out like islands in an archipelago. For her, the archipelago is an intersection between the solid and the liquid, where land disintegrates, and lines are fractured and redrawn.

‘The idea of the line and its material reality is recurring in my practice. Drawn physically in a landscape, like an extension of words, the direction of a thought or a tense wire. I make attempts at diversions and disruptions where body and place are inevitably in relation and where differences (not similarities) are elementary.’

Josefine Borgström (b. 1992, Karlskrona, Sweden)

Hot Spaces, Wild Mouths I, II, III, 2024
Series of three paintings: oil and oil pastel on linen

Skisser, 2024
Mixed media

Exploring gender and sexuality through themes such as sports and art history, Josefine Borgström primarily works with large-scale oil painting. She investigates the sometimes-delicate borderlands of contrasting concepts, such as intimacy/violence or the beautiful/the grotesque, with a focus equally divided between movements or actions of the human body and the materiality of paint.

Hot Spaces, Wild Mouths is a series of paintings using references from women’s professional wrestling – entertainment wrestling – where the idea of sports and gender as a performance is made highly visible. Dressed in deliberately stereotypical character costumes, the wrestlers perform feuds, friendships, loves and fights for their audience, and the line between empowerment and fetish becomes blurred.

Simon H. Danielsson (b. 1997, Malmö, Sweden)

Sällskapsrummet, 2024
The Communal Lounge
Performance and installation: clementines, apples, carrots, graphite
drawing, textile, tissue paper, papier-mâché, video and pencil sketch. A performance will be conducted during the opening
on 24 May (60 min).

In the work Sällskapsrummet [The Communal Lounge], Simon H. Danielsson’s starting point is the aspiration to show empathy and care. From his own experiences in the care profession, he knows the importance of providing security and stability to the care recipient, but also the difficulties in reaching through. The limited room, the cracks between caregiving and cruelty, the monstrously empathetic.

Danielsson often encountered Spanish slugs on his way to work, which in the installation is linked to a delicate encounter between two individuals. One cares, and the other is cared for, over and over again. The meeting occurs in the generally private, where one goes to reach out, extend one’s feelers, eat something perhaps.
The intimacy of the communal lounge. By the window, we see a dead crane.

In Sällskapsrummet, one is welcomed with blankets and food; the caregiver prepares and guides as well as they can. Time must be kept. The heart of the room is the schedule that pumps mechanically. Outside, a queue forms that decides who receives care and who is left without.

Maja Gregor (b. 1999, Koprivnica, Croatia)

And you can hold me, as he held her, 2024
Photo work

A self portrait
The edge
I can’t mourn anymore
A love letter
Love without violence
My spine can no longer be touched by idle fingers
They say hair holds memories
This is not a love letter
Portrait of Abdulsalam / Portrait of Sam

Maja Gregor works mostly with mediums of photography and cinematography with a focus on themes such as femininity, sexuality and self-identity. She often uses the camera as a tool to examine personal relationships and the effect they have on the relationship she has with herself.

The work And you can hold me, as he held her serves as a reflective journal entry, exploring personal events and experiences through the lens of a camera. The installation conveys a story and perspectives on life, inviting the viewer to intertwine their own personal experiences with the artist’s intimate reflections. It invites you to act as an observer: observer of life, observer of the subject, observer of the observer.


Juni Liv Uma (b. 1984, Borås, Sweden)

Transportör, 2024

Eoners ekon, 2024
Echoes of Eons
Mixed media

For a few years now, artist Maria Bengtsson has been working under the pseudonym Juni Liv Uma. She works with sculpture in relation to place and materiality and bases her artistic explorations on the fragmentary composition of objects.

In the work Transportör [Transporter], Juni Liv Uma deals with the green screen as a separator, and how it – as she sees it – holds promises of success. She has used an ancient craft technique, basket weaving with plain weave, where the materials are placed above or below. Off or on. One or zero.

In Eoners ekon [Echoes of Eons], leaves of the aloe vera plants are connected to an electronic circuit board. The electrical pulses flowing through the plants as they move and react to their surroundings turn into sound.

Beatriz Martins (b. 2000, Cartaxo, Portugal)

Close Reading, 2024
Installation: handmade paper, bioplastic, porcelain, metal
Engravings: etching

Inspired by her surroundings, Beatriz Martins works with different kinds of surfaces, exploring textures and marks. Observing the outside world, she finds details that draw her attention and make her curious enough to stop, dedicate time and discover its impact on her. Those details are marks present on surfaces, traces of something or someone, traces of life that Beatriz wants to make noticeable.

So, with surfaces in mind, she works on them, scratching and damaging them through drawing and creating her own textures through the material and its plasticity. In her work, she finds the process is very important. Trusting it makes it possible for her to explore the material freely, creating her own surfaces where we can recognize lines and dots, search for shapes and shadows, and inspect the uncanniness of their fragility, transparency, and irregularity.


Laoise Ní Ghríofa (b. 1999, Galway, Irland)

Ag faire orm, ag faire ort, 2024
Watching Me, Watching You

Aon dó capall is bó, 2024
One Two Horse and Cow (from Irish children’s nursery rhyme)

Sláinte Banríon na Mara, 2024
Cheers Queen of the Sea
Beads, textiles, and acrylic on canvas

(W)rath, 2024
(A play on the English word ‘wrath’ and the Irish word for a ring fort, ‘rath’)
Installation, wood and ceramic tiles

Laoise Ní Ghríofa’s work explores the relationship between colour, material, and language. Through her bright paintings, she creates spaces that invite the viewer to engage and be a part of the work. She explores imagery through reduction and colour, focusing on shape, bodies, and clothing, and how these normal, everyday things can be transformed into their own stories. As a native Irish and English speaker, she plays with language through the titles of her works.

Her current body of work takes inspiration mainly from Irish mythology and haute couture. This work explores her own memories and relationship to growing up in Ireland and is a dialogue between what she remembers and how she relays this onto the canvas. The installation and paintings create a space that the viewer can enter and be a part of. Her work allows the viewer to create their own imaginative space within the boundaries of her work.

Janina Renström (b. 1997, Nässjö, Sweden)

Jag trodde aldrig att jag skulle säga det här på tv, 2023
I Never Thought I’d Say This on Television
Series of three paintings: oil on linen

Through her paintings, Janina Renström wants to narrate but also to mislead. In her work, everything happens in front of the camera, like in a film. She reworks photographs from old private albums, which often carry elusive significance. Frozen moments, barely recalled by their owner, where the meaning has begun to blur. The indecipherable is rendered in layers of paint.

Jag trodde aldrig jag skulle säga det här på tv [I Never Thought I’d Say This on Television] is a series of three paintings where we as viewers are invited into a private room with five female figures of different ages. The title alludes to a line recognisable from reality shows. Just as such television productions present a contrived image of reality, Janina Renström aims for an imitation of authenticity, but also a relationship between the viewer and the gazes that meet us in her paintings.

Raphael Vargas (b. 1987, Vitória, Espírito Santo, Brazil)

i mörkret, 2024
within the darkness
Installation with 16mm projector and film (7:30 min), sound 1 (6 min), sound 2 (9 min), silver-gelatine print, 4x5 film, acrylic, book

What do we see in the darkness? This is the starting question for Raphael Vargas’s work i mörkret [within the darkness]. As the answers unfold through evocative imagery, exploring liminal and ominous environments, the artist tries to find responses to existential questions. In his perspective, darkness transcends mere physicality. It also embodies spiritual and psychological aspects; it is a state of life. Confronting depression and suicidal tendencies, the artist exposes his vulnerabilities, revealing scars and wounds and integrating his work into the healing process.

Vargas’s photographic work is mainly based on analogue formats and experimental techniques but also on the intersection of analogue and digital media. It aspires to articulate his cosmovision of the ephemeral nature of existence and the diversity of life and being. His work is inspired by moments and places, personal connections and relationships; it is about an ongoing narrative of transitions and movements.


Ágnes Vokatá (b. 1998, Prague, Czech Republic)

Don’t Forget to Play, 2024
Acrylic on canvas, mixed media

Ágnes Vokatá’s work primarily deals with the themes of sharing, family relationships and heritage. For the last few years, her focus has been on our childhood and how our history and memory influence us.

By transferring memories into paintings through analogue photography, gravure, and screen printing, Vokatá explores an artistic practice that finds its source in joy, imagination and spontaneity. The installation Don’t Forget to Play is a free combination of these techniques.

Her main principle is the banal but profound idea that it is possible to grow up but still maintain the childlike joy of life. How do we experience this joy? How do we make life more spontaneous and truer to ourselves? Can we return to childhood with our adult life experiences?

Interview with Ángela Abuja Miranda
Interview with Ida Boman
Interview with Josefine Borgström
Interview with Simon H. Danielsson
Interview with Maja Gregor
Interview with Juni Liv Uma (Maria Bengtsson)
Interview with Beatriz Martins
Interview with Laoise Ní Ghríofa
Interview with Janina Renström
Interview with Raphael Vargas
Interview with Ágnes Vokatá
Umeå Academy of Fine Arts / After Tomorrow at Sunrise