Gertrud Olsson


Enheten för design och konsthantverk Steneby
Hemslöjdsvägen 1
66695 Dals långed
Hemslöjdsvägen 1
66695 Dals Långed

Om Gertrud Olsson

Universitetslektor i Teori och Historia vid HDK-Valand Campus Steneby

I am a designer and architect with a PhD in architecture (KTH School of Architecture, Stockholm), a senior lecturer in Theory and History at HDK-Valand Steneby. In addition, a Visiting Scholar at SRII Swedish Research Institute in Istanbul, a member of the SRII Research Collegium.

My research in the intersection of architecture, art, design and craft deals with perception, light, colour and material; investigations of mosaic, tile and glass from ancient times to contemporary structures. The aesthetic value of materiality is of interest, the tactile sensations in relation to touch and tactilism, the concept of aging of the materials. Understanding and awareness of the materials, the room and architecture as such, the relation to human size, the interacting body are of importance .

The overall subject in my research deals with intermediation and intermediaries between different cultures; examination of social, historical and architectural perspectives, investigation of the craft people and artist role in cross-cultural boundaries, of how new knowledge is produced. An example of an agent in east and west in the late 19th century is Osman Hamdi Bey (1842–1910), Turkish painter, archaeologist and founder of Istanbul Archaeology museums. In this context, Mualla Eyüboğlu Anhegger (1919–2009) became one of the first female Turkish architects, and also, one of the first professionals working with restoration. The concept of modernity in relation to tradition is present. An ongoing project deals with the African city of Asmara and the complex relation between modernity and the vernacular heritage. Asmara is designed by Italian architects and built by Eritrean crafts people in the 1930s during the colonial time (and from 2017 included in the UNESCO World Heritage List).

My thesis The Visible and the Invisible: Color Contrast Phenomena in Space, published in 2009, explores colour contrast phenomena in a context of visual culture and aesthetics, in architecture and in art. Early modernism manifested an interest in colour contrasts and perception, which lead the way to a new interdisciplinary outlook on vision and simultaneity.

Forthcoming publication 2024:

The chapter "Tiden, Platsen, Byggnaden" in the anthology En båge genom tiden. Ritualer kring en göteborgshistoria (2024), Korpens förlag.