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HILMA AF KLINT – THE TEMPLE: immersive virtual reality event

EVENT: HILMA AF KLINT – THE TEMPLE: immersive virtual reality event

DATE: 15th October 2022 - 16th October 2022

TIME: 11am to 6pm




Booking: via Eventbrite. Click on link below

Hilma af Klint, The Temple, 2022, virtual reality conceived by Stolpe Publishing and Acute Art. Courtesy of Stolpe Publishing and Acute Art. Created by Daniel Birnbaum and Kurt Almqvist and directed by Marika Stolpe.

You are invited to enter another world. Over two days in October, Swedenborg House will be staging a unique immersive virtual reality event exploring the paintings of the Swedish artist Hilma af Klint. The VR experience lasts 12 minutes and will feature 12 booking slots every 30 minutes. The first slot will be at 11am and the last will be at 5.30. There will be a break between 2pm to 3pm. Advance booking is essential. The event will also see the launch of a comprehensive new seven volume edition of the Hilma af Klint Catalogue Raisonné.


The Temple: immersive virtual reality experience

Hilma af Klint dreamt of a spiral-shaped building to house her most important works. According to her notebooks, she wanted it to be built on an island in Sweden but the idea never materialised, and the temple remained an imaginary creation – until now. 

More than a century later, af Klint’s vision has been translated into an immersive VR experience. It takes you on a cosmic journey from the Milky Way, through spirals in
nature and into a few of the artist’s most important paintings, some of them even coming alive. 

Hilma af Klint sometimes referred to her temple as a church for a new era and at other times called it a museum. The exact meaning remains open to interpretation. At the same time, her paintings were clearly intended to lead the viewer to levels of awareness beyond that of everyday life. Was it really a physical building she had in mind? Or was it a spiritual site – something existing in another dimension? 

Perhaps her temple, simultaneously spiritual and physical, could not be realised because she did not have access to the right medium. She had no knowledge about the technological possibilities that were to come, and the idea remained on paper. Today things are different. Hilma af Klint’s temple, inspired by the teachings of Christian Rosenkreutz, has arrived with the help of VR. You are invited to enter another world. 

Hilma af Klint The Temple was conceived by Daniel Birnbaum and Kurt Almqvist and directed by Marika Stolpe. The experience was produced by Acute Art and published by Stolpe Publishing. Creative Director – Rodrigo Marques. Music – Andrew Sheriff.

Hilma af Klint

Born in Stockholm, Hilma af Klint studied at the Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Arts. She became established as a respected artist, exhibiting figurative paintings. Originally a devout Christian, she became involved in spiritualism and later pursued a keen interest in the ideas of Rudolf Steiner’s Rosicrucian theosophy and anthroposophy. These modes of spiritual engagement were popular across Europe, especially in artistic and literary circles. In recent years, interest in af Klint’s esoteric paintings has grown, and in 2018 a major survey of her work at the Guggenheim Museum in New York became the best-attended exhibition in the history of the institution. The Catalogue Raisonné presents the majority of Hilma af Klint’s important works, many of which have never been exhibited.

Grupp X, nr 1. Altarbild, 1915
Olja och bladmetall på duk
237,5 × 179,5 cm
HAK187 © Stiftelsen Hilma af Klints Verk

Catalogue Raisonné

The final volume in a Catalogue Raisonné of the abstract pioneer Hilma af Klint, one of the first to be compiled for a Swedish artist, is now being released. The series comprises seven volumes and nearly 1,600 of af Klint’s works.

Hilma af Klint has taken the art world by storm. Once virtually unknown, she is now compared with the greatest modern painters, and her works are considered ground-breaking. Nearly 80 years after her death, the map of early abstract art, both in Sweden and internationally, has been redrawn.

“A Catalogue Raisonné is necessary in order to see the different cycles, motifs and symbols that recur in such an exciting way. If someone really wants to understand how Hilma af Klint’s works function, they need these books,” says Daniel Birnbaum at Acute Art, who edited the catalogue together with Kurt Almqvist.

“When Hilma af Klint bequeathed her work to the future, she did not want to leave the image we would form of it to chance. She was her own archivist, editor and censor. She placed her spiritual work in the centre, in words and pictures. This legacy, there can be no doubt, was most important to her,” writes the art historian Julia Voss in her afterword.

The artworks are presented in the same order as the anthroposophist Olof Sundström numbered them in 1945, based on the artist’s notes. A specially produced slipcase to hold all seven volumes will be available in the autumn of 2022.

About Acute Art

Acute Art is a London-based art organisation directed by Daniel Birnbaum. It brings together renowned international artists, new media and technology to produce and exhibit compelling, cutting-edge visual artworks in Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Mixed Reality (MR). 

Works produced include those by Marina Abramović, Lee Bul, Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg, Nina Chanel Abney, Olafur Eliasson, Antony Gormley, Anish Kapoor, Bjarne Melgaard, Jeff Koons, KAWS, Precious Okoyomon and others. The artworks are accessible through creative collaborations, with recent exhibitions taking place in Basel, Buenos Aires, London, Melbourne, Montreal, New York, Singapore, Seoul and Venice.

To learn more about Acute Art click on the link.

About Stolpe Publishing

Stolpe Publishing was founded in 2018 by Marika Stolpe and specialises in high quality non-fiction books on art, history and culture. In addition to the recently released Catalogue Raisonné of Hilma af Klint’s works, Stolpe Publishing has also produced a number of anthologies on the artist.

To learn more about Stolpe Publishing and the Hilma af Klint Catalogue Raisonné click on the links.

Still from: Hilma af Klint, The Temple, 2022, virtual reality conceived by Stolpe Publishing and Acute Art. Courtesy of Stolpe Publishing and Acute Art