Mollbrink's Art Gallery
Uppsala | Kungshamn

Ingrid Roth

Artist and expressive arts therapist, born in 1958 in Strömsund, the province of Jämtland.

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In a short space of time, Ingrid Roth has created a name for herself as an important Swedish artist. Ingrid's work of art can now be found at galleries all over Sweden as well as in Japan, the United States and Thailand. Her exhibitions attract many visitors and her painings are in high demand. Ingrid's images depiciting dreamlike sceneries in warm colours bring comfort, inspiration and hope.


"Creating art for me is to open up my heart. An image says more than a thousand words. It is all about surrendering to the creative process and entering into a dialogue with the motif I am working on".


The road to a profession is not always straight, as anyone who explores Ingrid Roth's progression towards establishment and recognition as an artist would attest. At the age of eighteen, she left her native Jämtland, filled with a spirit of adventure and intending to take up academic studies. Her first stop was Uppsala but the world was calling. Ingrid Roth packed her bags and travelled through Europe. She observed and absorbed people's way of life, she worked where she could while saving up her money, and then she moved on. She lived in England for a period of time. Then she married and lived in the Netherlands a few years; the young couple then returned to Sweden where they eventually went their separate ways and Ingrid settled in Uppsala.

In the mid-eighties Ingrid had an accident resulting in a serious back and pelvic injury, which more or less confined her to bed for a number of years. Dark thoughts kept haunting her. Is this how things are meant to be? Will I remain an invalid for the rest of my life? Such corrosive thoughts could easily wear down the courage of someone with a spirit less rebellious and less life-affirming than that of Ingrid Roth.


Great changes and upheavals are often set in motion by lesser events. Ingrid Roth kept reading and absorbing inspiration from her articles about Frida Kahlo, with which she had papered her walls. She realised that a sick-bed does not equal incapacitation. She began to experiment with water-colours but soon switched to acrylic paint which harmonised better with her innate feeling for colours. She found a kindred spirit in Paul Klee whose multi-coloured facets became a source of inspiration to her. She started experimenting with larger surfaces of paint and gradually found her own personal style. Her optimism, the efforts of her doctors and the gentle rehabilitation programme eventually gave results and allowed Ingrid to leave the sick-bed. She moved back to Jämtland and in 1990 she enrolled on a course in painting and graphic narrative art. She also qualified as a therapist of expressive arts.

Today Ingrid Roth is a living example that anything is possible, as long as you believe in what you do. Her ability to enthuse course participants, her expertise and her unwavering commitment have lately been noticed by schools and by representatives for town and county councils who have hired her again and again. Her artistry has also been eulogised by critics as well as by the public.



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Ingrid Roth is a colourful naivist who has created 'Trasmania', a place and a people who know nothing of hate or dissension. In her art, colours and joy dominate. The sun shines over the young and their games with the same intensity as it shines over the laundry hung up to dry between the houses. On a table, a welcoming cup of coffee is waiting for someone and the colourful houses lean on and support each other. 'Enjoy the here and now', Ingrid Roth says. 'Transform the monotony of day-to-day life into something valuable. Indulge in a moment of relaxation even if it's only to have a cup of coffee'.

'The perspectives are insane - but somehow they manage to be just right', an enthusiastic art critic writes about one of Ingrid Roth's exhibitions. He continues: '[Her paintings] always focus on the good things in life. Ingrid Roth paints her houses, her people, her animals and her landscapes with playful ease. Though the perspectives can at times be utterly insane, the whole is always exactly right.'

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The Passionists are artists who explore basic existential problems and are characterised by their concern for traditional content and techniques. Passionist artists focus on the exploration of elementary existential conditions and problems. They are considered black sheep in an art scene where avant-garde is the norm.

Merete Sanderhoff, arthistorian at the
National Museum for Art in Copenhagen

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Describing Ingrid Roth as a Passionist feels right. A group of artists who according to Merete Sanderhoff continue to use traditional techniques to create figurative and narrative paintings. Artists whose paintings express love, hope and poetry. Their work can also portray themes like pain and loss, longing for something that is gone or unattainable, selfdoubt - but most of all, poetry. Ingrid Roth has only recently established herself as an artist. Her works hang in galleries in Östersund, Uppsala, Stockholm, Gothenburg, Bollnäs, Borås, Värnamo, Tranås, New York, and Longyearbyen in Svalbard. She has held around 20 solo exhibitions since 1994, and her travelling exhibitions have reached as far as Tokyo and Bangkok.

If, dear reader, you would like to disengage yourself from the brutality of today's avant-garde art, news reports, crime stories or computer games - you can find comfort in Ingrid Roth's poetic images. Ingrid Roth inspires hope.

"Learning to take nothing for granted has been difficult, I think. My conclusion is that I should enjoy what I have, as long as I have it. Stop and live life here and now, there is hope for everyone, a place for everyone. That is what I want to say with my paintings. Ingrid sees bold, vibrant colours as a challenge. She wants to combine strong colours so that they harmonise with each other. The stark contrasts are important, equally important as night needing day, joy needing sorrow. Ingrid uses colour contrasts to portray extreme emotional states.

"Learning to take nothing for granted has been difficult, I think. My conclusion is that I should enjoy what I have, as long as I have it. Stop and live life here and now, there is hope for everyone, a place for everyone. That is what I want to say with my paintings".

Ingrid sees bold, vibrant colours as a challenge. She wants to combine strong colours so that they harmonise with each other. The stark contrasts are important, equally important as night needing day, joy needing sorrow. Ingrid uses colour contrasts to portray extreme emotional states.

Colour is not the only element of focus in Ingrid's work. Her motifs include floating people, tulips, leaning buildings, suns and moons. She portrays the washing, bathtubs, coffee tables, happy everyday scenes. With dogs, birds and masses of tulips. Images created by an apparently refined naïvist that give the viewer a real endorphin kick.
Tage Levin

View prints by Roth