season of melancholy is an explorational art/design project about the seasonal depression that seems to affect most of us.
why is rain and dimness most commonly related to melancholy? does it have something to do with our primitive need for light? how does melancholy translate into design and art?
“Melancholy has always been a very prominent feature in my life. Somehow I’m drawn and attracted to the aesthetic of melancholy. It is very noticeable how the seasons change the overall mood of the people. It might be a Scandinavian thing. I’m not sure yet…”
The project was exhibited in stockholm for the first time in 2016 and again as a part of the official program of Design march in reykjavik 2018.
the exhibition consisted of clothing, paintings, film, soundscapes, poetry and conceptual art pieces.
visitors were invited to enter a “Room of Light”, a small booth, in which the day-to-night cycle is replicated with light design, giving the participants an overview about what might be the main reason of seasonal depression. The temperature and luminance changes was presented according to different seasons, latitudes, times of the day etc.
During the exhibition interview session were held, where Svart invited people to openly express their views about seasonal melancholy.
“From my experience, people often have some kind of view and/or experience
about this, and since am working in an explorational way, I want to keep expanding my knowledge and understanding about the subject. This will also further engage the visitor into my concept and give them room to apply the theory on themselves.”
The interviews were short one-by- one sessions with the guests, providing
them with different mediums which they could press their thoughts with; verbally, written, abstractly or conceptually.
the centerpiece of the project consists of three separate clothing collections that express melancholy in different ways,
from the surrounding to the internal, to svart’s personal melancholy.
Part 1 – The surrounding melancholy
The first collection explored the “visible” melancholy, the filter between the person and the society. All clothes were completely black and featured a nihilist style.
Part 2 – The internal melancholy
The second collection I started to speculate how the design aesthetic of melancholy looks like, in color and form. The individual was in focus, expressing the internal sensation. Although still dark, I explored new colors which I felt could express my apprehension.
Part 3 – ESJA vs STHLM
For this collection I took inspiration from my recent move to Reykjavik. I was emotionally somewhere in between Reykjavík and Stockholm.
I love the ocean, the mountains and the quaint feeling of Iceland. It is bliss, somewhere I can breathe, whereas Stockholm is adorned by strikingly dark melancholy.
The films follow two characters both stricken by melancholy in oppositeways. We follow their journey from loneliness to their momentuous meeting.
“She” is about feeling settled. A life without meaning, a lack of expectations. Is it dangerous to only think
about the unknown? To never take a step in a new direction.
“He” is about a yearning for the unknown, his burning desire. What is the value of our existence in this
infinite universe? Do we even exist if we’re not recognized by our surrounding space? Is what we’re searching for definable only in retrospect?