Hilding Linnqvist in North Africa


Hilding Linnqvist Människostudier, akvarell

Hilding Linnqvist in North Africa

The Hilding Linnqvist Archive has since 2010 been located at Marabouparken konsthall. Our aim is to show new sides of Swedish artist Hilding Linnqvist (1891-1984) and to make the archive available to academic research. One part of this work is to put together exhibitions, another is to catalogue and document the archive. The latter is work that usually takes place behind the scenes.

While preparing the exhibition Hilding Linnqvist in North Africa, we decided to show the less public side of the archive by moving some of the filing cabinets down to the exhibition, as well as showing the range of material that is included in the archive: anything from finished paintings to sketch books, newspaper clippings, hotel bills and letters.

The exhibition focuses on Hilding Linnqvist’s many trips to North Africa. His first visit to the region took place during the winter of 1927-28, when during a trip to Spain, Linnqvist decided to cross the Mediterranean and visit Morocco. Instead of staying in the coastal areas, like most of his artist colleagues, Hilding LInnqvist explored the mountainous regions and travelled inland to places like Fez, Meknés och Marrakesh.

Over the years, Hilding Linnqvist returned to North Africa several times, and besides Morocco, he travelled to Egypt, Tunisia, and Sudan. During a trip up the Nile in 1960, he came to witness the building of the Aswan Dam. The Dam was to create new agricultural areas and electricity, but also threatened to drown ancient cultural areas and uproot 200,000 people. Linnqvist also visited the temples in Abu Simbel, and continued up the Nile into Sudan.

During this trip, the artist agreed to provide illustrations for the Danish writer Thorkild Hansens travel log, published in the newspaper Information. Hilding Linnqvists large textile Nubian Village, currently hanging in Sveriges Riksdag. Several of Linnqvist’s preparatory drawing for this piece are on view in the exhibition.