Erik Vestman and Nils Petter display art in the most unusual places, and the Swedish duo has gained notoriety for its sometimes unauthorized installations. One eerie series featured laminated photos floating just under the surface of a river, calling to mind a drowned Ophelia; another saw them renovate an empty concrete space under the pier into a hobbit-sized art gallery.
“We didn’t really have any clear goal when we started digging,” the pair told Vice. “It was an interesting, exclusive ‘secret’ place that people wanted to show others. Thousands of people crawled in during the six months it was there. We have five full guestbooks. The postman said he would deliver mail there if someone wrote to the pier. Someone got married there, people threw parties, preschool classes crawled in, and someone left a boat as a present for staying there for a few days on a road trip.”
While surreal and beautiful, these installations were not without controversy. According to this newspaper report, rescue crews were called in to remove what many believed to be a body from these waters. No body was found: the artists attached floatation devices to the underside of laminated photos on plywood and then used snorkels to drop lines, making the ghostly images float just below the surface of the water.
For ten years we have been making hundreds of our own paving stones with images on, and placing them back on the streets. With this technique we were invited to Örebro Open Art, which also resulted in a music video for Vit Päls. In association with Landskrona Photo Festival 2014, we made a photo installation weighing half a ton, and designed and built lights for it.”
Zlatan Kicking It
“We built a Zlatan jumping jack in Malmö. Everybody seemed to love him. Kids, hardcore supporters, municipality and owners of the stadium. The thing that remains now is the question: what happened to Zlatan and is he still kicking it? The city of Malmö actually liked it and told the newspaper that they wanted to keep it. But the owner of the building chose to take it down. And crush it.”
Another surrealist piece: a billboard from the city, assembled and placed in the wilderness.
“We took a billboard from the city and placed it in the forest. It felt great, and finally advertisement came to use”
“During the winter we secretly start building a room in a hollow space under a pier in Malmö. Half a year later, in the beginning of summer, it is finished”
“The rumor spreads and the story about the room startes living its own life. Thousands of people crawl through the hole and visit the room under the pier.
The project eventually becomes a film that is shown on Swedish national television, and a photo book that is nominated for the Swedish photobook prize”
“Six months later the room is demolished. Where the room once was, there are only small white stones”