Thirty-four years have passed since I first met James Rosenquist. It was in New York and I remember how nervous my colleague at the time, Edward Thordén, and I were as we got onto the bus that took us from Midtown to Rosenquist‘s studio on Chambers Street. We were met, on our arrival, by James Rosenquist in a good mood who greeted us with the words “Hej svenska pojkar!” (“Hi Swedish boys!”). At a coffee shop nearby he told us about his youth in New York´s hip art world.
During the years that have passed James Rosenquist has taught me a lot about the art world. He showed me the importance of documenting exhibitions with catalogues, printed materials and photos. When the gallery celebrated thirty years of operations in Stockholm earlier this year we could proudly show off more than 100 different exhibition catalogues that we have produced over the years.
Working with James Rosenquist has always been both easy and thoroughly enjoyable. During the 34 years of our acquaintance the gallery has sold some 80 of his paintings as well as hundreds of art prints, and we have shown his work in Gothenburg and in Singapore as well as in Stockholm. It is a great joy for the Wetterling Gallery to be able to present a long awaited solo exhibition comprising 12 formidable paintings. We are faced with artistry that is both powerful and resilient in an exhibition in which the paintings, in striking fashion, merge past and present and prove that people never stop developing.
I should like to thank everyone who has worked to make this exhibition possible but, most of all I would like to thank James Rosenquist. It is an honour to have you here in Sweden!
Stockholm, April 2014