Half a Century with GKM

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Gold! There was never a shadow of doubt about what colour this book should be. They call a 50th wedding anniversary a golden wedding, don’t they? And in our opinion half a century is well worth celebrating. After all, what can surpass a milestone like that? There is always a centenary celebration, of course, but as we are unlikely to be quite as agile half a century from now, we’ll leave that to the generations to come.

When we celebrated the gallery’s first 40 years, we produced a pictorial retrospective in book form that we have now revised, updated and extended. Johan Persson, who has been following our progress for many years, has kindly complemented this with a text that gives his perspective on the work of the gallery.

Reading the text and browsing through the portfolio of images that Ola Hollsten has helped us to put together, we cannot help but feel a sense of pride. Above all else we are impressed by what our parents succeeded in building up – in principle, from nothing – with untiring perseverance and motivated by their great love of art. Solveig and Siwert may have been a little crazy, but they succeeded in what they set out to do.

A great deal has happened in 50 years. While many of the artists we have worked with are no longer alive, their work lives on. A new generation of artists has entered the scene and contributed to the progress of the gallery. But it is not only art itself that is developing and changing; the same can be said of the business as a whole. Hence the need to move with the times.

While it’s a pity that the gallery now welcomes fewer physical visitors, having a virtual shop window that the whole world can see opens up fantastic opportunities. Today we have customers from Europe, Asia, South America and the USA who are able to use our homepage to step inside our gallery and browse through our entire offering, not merely the works that happen to be hanging on the walls. Our online sales have risen sharply, not only thanks to www.gkm.se, but also via international websites such as 1stDibs, Artsper and Artsy. These sales platforms attract large numbers of collectors, interior designers and art-lovers.

Despite the changes that have taken place, the heart of our operations remains where it has been since 1984, at number 30, Stora Nygatan in Malmö. It was Corneille who advised Siwert to move the gallery to Malmö. Maybe he had an inkling of what was to come, foreseeing how this city would evolve into a dynamic hub for education and trade, with a collage of cultures that enriches the city and paints it in a rainbow of colours.

Now we look forward to the future, with eyes wide open and filled with curiosity. We feel that we have a firm platform on which to build, with Ludvig’s youthful enthusiasm to complement our own long years of experience in what is a rather special yet incredibly inspiring business. That, we believe, is worth its weight in gold.

Thomas & Kalle
Bergström

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