Texts by Marc Donnadieu and John Hutchinson
Jockum Nordström creates oddball, apparently naïve narratives that owe much to the twin influences of folk art and modernist absurdism. Each of his painted, drawn, or collaged stories is both specific and open-ended, as though — not unlike Henry Darger’s paintings — they are part of a much grander and ongoing tale that unfolds over a prolonged period. His distinctive sensibility draws on a wide range of inspirations in music, poetry, and architecture — particularly the Stockholm suburb where he grew up, which both his drawings and his sculptures reference on an ongoing basis. Other important influences include Swedish academic and pop culture, as well as American folk art, Art Brut, and Surrealist collage. Dotted with an assortment of objects, animals, and people, the narratives in his art can by turns be elegant, endearing, or even at times disconcerting. Although carefully structured, Nordström’s style is distinguished by an apparently spontaneous and improvised quality that mines the rich vein of his fertile imagination. The action unfolds in a sequential format, which is often reminiscent of movie storyboards in its episodic nature.
This publication comprises almost 100 of Jockum Nordström’s works, unfolding a comprehensive panorama of his career to date, ranging from the earlier pencil drawings to his more recent vivid collages, including his architectural models and photographic collages.