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From the opening of the six Social Democratic parliamentary portraits in the second chamber 1996
 

Born:
1943 in Stockholm


Education:
Idun Lovén art school, Konstfack, and training in mural techniques and glass at Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm.


Represented by:
The States portrait collections Nationalmuseum, Public Art Agency Sweden, Stockholm City Museum, Swedish Social Democratic Party's parliamentary group, Stockholm Municipality, Stockholm County Council, Borås Museum of Art, Borås Municipality, Gotland Municipality, Älvsborg County Council, Stenungsunds Municipality, Åtvidaberg Municipality, et al.


Major exhibitions:

Began exhibiting in 1971 with the exhibition “Hotad idyll” (Threatened Idyll), started in Eskilstuna but later shown at several art museums in Sweden. Liljevalchs vårsalong a number of times.

Borås Museum of Art, 1986
Östergötlands Museum of Art, 1987
Young Generation, Kulturhuset Stockholm, 1987
“Nostra di Pittura” with Torsten Bergmark and Sven Ljungberg among others, Italy, 1988
Suede & Toiles Paris 1989, shown in Sweden 1989-1990; Kalmar Museum, Gävle Centre of Art, Gotland Museum of Art and Sveagalleriet Stockholm.

Stenungsunds Art Gallery, 1995
“Nordgrafia”, Gotland, 1996
Vår Gård, Saltsjöbaden, 1997
GFK, Visby 1997
Exhibition at Östergötlands Museum of Art in Linköping for “Kvinnor Kan” (Women Can) fair, 1986.
Produced and showed exhibitions at Café Umbra, Hornsgatan 5, in Stockholm, for two years.
Took the initiative together with Barbro Werkmäster, to start the exhibition about women’s art that in the end was named “Konstfeminism” (Art Feminism) by the Swedish Exhibition Agency in 2005.
Jakobsbergs Art Gallery, summer 2007. Exhibition together with Kristina Arnshelm and Marja Ruta.
Svenska självporträtt, från Zorn till samtid (Swedish Self-portraits, from Zorn to our time), Mjellby Konstmuseum, 2008

Started Konstkortleken (“Artist’s deck of cards”) together with 54 female artists in conjunction with the exhibition called “Konstfeminism” (Art Feminism) to create a fund for women’s cultural projects in the future. The fund is administered by Ekobanken in Järna.


Said about Kerstin Diedrich:

“The self-portrait has ever since the renaissance been a genre that female artists have used to communicate their view of themselves as an artist, showcasing both their prowess in painting portraits and their professional identity. Since the view of the painter - the creative human - is a man, the female painters have used different strategies to deal with the problem of being a female painter with a professional identity that is not attributed to them. Additionally, a woman with a brush and a palette is thought of as the Painter’s Muse. Another place assigned to women is that of the model, an idea that exists as historical ballast for the female painters. This affects, not in the least, the infinite amount of actions carried out by the male hegemony that influences women’s notion of themselves as objects. The female painter’s self-portrait is therefore often a means to validate a subject position: to reclaim her body, her face and her person.

Kerstin Diedrich displays the same gravity in a self-portrait from 1973. She has depicted herself naked, sitting on a stool, looking solemnly at the beholder. We can also see her back, reflected in a mirror. She has no painter’s equipment, she has chosen to show herself as a human first, painter second. Human and painter, but also human and female. The sitting position and the frog’s eye perspective enlarges the foot. She presents it to the viewer, imposes herself on the space, and is prepared to walk a long road. I find the woman in the flower ornamentation of the wallpaper.”

-Barbro Werkmäster, Art Critic and Honorary Doctor
From the catalogue for Konstfeminism (Art Feminism), 2005

Kerstin Diedrich’s painting is supported by her interest in people and her respect for tradition. Through her connections in Women Studies, she has had the opportunity to portray notable Swedish women. It is important that women in particular have been depicted, since they then get a place in history and in people’s minds. The Art of Portraiture has been used through the ages to accentuate the subjects importance and social status, and thus, it has been dominated by male clients. Kerstin Diedrich works with beautiful lighting and blonde colours, but the symbols she surrounds the model with are few and inconspicuous. She depicts her models in an everyday environment that we feel familiar with, and it is not until we have a closer look that we notice what the subject is doing. Kerstin Diedrich uses the unsought and the commonplace. However, I would like to emphasize the fondness with which she portrays her loved ones, the father, her children, the family. Here, she has created an enlightened sense of presence.

Ce qui éléve la peinture de Kerstin Diedrich, c'est son intrérét pour les éstres humains et son respect pour la tradition. Êlle a entre autre á cause de son intérêt pour le mouvment féministe fait le portrait de plusieurs célébres femmes suédoises. Il est important das l´art, de donner un visage aux femmen en particulier, elles trouvent ainsi une place dans le conscientde l'historie et des hommes. On s'est toujours, par tradition, servi de la peinture de portrais pour faire valoir l'importance et la position de celui dont on fait le portrait et c'est pourquoi on trouve tant de portraits d´hommes. Les oeuvres de Kerstin Diedrich ont une belle lumiére et des couleurs blondes, mais les symboles qui entourent les modéles sont rares et ne frappent pas l'oeil. Elle choisit des milieux simples, faciles á reconaître wr c'est seulement au bout d'un moment que l'on se rend compte de ce que la personne dépeinte est en train de faire. Kerstin Diedrich se sert de la simplicité et de la vie de tous les jours. Mais je voudrais souligner la chaleur avec laquelle elle fait le portrait des personnes qui lui sont proches, le pére, ses enfants, la famille. Lá, elle a créé un sentiment de drésence plain de lumiére.

- Thomas Millroth, from the exhibition catalogue for Suede & Toiles, Paris -89