SPAR – The “Silk Peace Art Road” Project



Lund, Sweden – from March 10, 2018 and till today
Updated and reported regularly

Jan Oberg, Oberg PhotoGraphics, has been invited by the Global Art Affairs (GAA) Foundation and the European Cultural Center to exhibit at Palazzo Mora in Venice during the Biennale 2019.
This exciting opportunity stimulated the development of a bigger idea that combines Oberg’s work for peace and art photography with a focus on the Chinese-initiated Silk Belt and Road Initiative, the largest and most visionary in today’s world in terms of linking people and cultures into cooperation rather than confrontation.
In various ways the project – with the Road as metaphor – stretches from Shanghai over Myanmar, Kazakhstan, Georgia, Iran and Syria to Venice and seeks to promote cooperation and peace in the process.
The “Silk PeaceArt Road” project is made public at this very early development stage where no funding is secured to encourage you to share co-operative ideas, contacts you may have in China and along the Silk Road or to potential partners, artists, sponsors, art institutions, etc.


Summary in 7 elements

1. To stay in Shanghai at the Swatch Art Peace Hotel for a period of 3-6 months.
2. Make use of selected existing archived materials such as photos I’ve taken in China 1983, Myanmar, Somalia and Somaliland, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Iran, Aleppo in Syria and Venice which are all situated on the:
3. Old Silk Road and on the new Silk Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) that China initiated and which my work will evolve around, and:
4. Combining some of the old photos with new ones and various other materials and artefacts into a completely new multimedia creation (one big or several smaller related to each other), and:
5. Exhibiting it all at Palazzo Mora, Venice, in 2019 in the context of the Biennale (May 11-Nov 24) and documenting the process on Instagram, my blog and perhaps also, later, in a book.
6. The project seeks to explore relations between art, the emerging new world order, and history in the future as well as the interactions of cultures, people and expressions, and finally:
7. It will build synergy between my two ‘lives’ as academic peace & future researcher and art photographer.

[175 words]

Continue under project logo


Point by point

1. Shanghai

I’ll apply for a scholarship to stay and work for 3-6 months at the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai, China. I need impulses from the non-Western world, from Asia/China which will, I believe, be the main driving force in changing our world during decades to come – a world beyond Western domination.

I visited China during 16 days in 1983 as a member of a Danish cultural and friendship delegation and have wanted to return ever since – both for peace and future research and to learn about the super dynamic Chinese art world.

I can’t think of a better place than the Swatch Art Peace Hotel which carries both “art” and “peace” in its title. One gets a room and a working space in which to test ideas, materials and techniques and get inspired by being in a very different culture and by working together with people from around the world who are passionate about art.


A stay there will also give me the opportunity to explore the Chinese contemporary art world and travel around a bit in China (before or after) and study how the Chinese themselves and their cultural world(s) relate to the huge Silk Road and Belt Initiative – and its cultural potentials.

Finally, the Hotel wants the resident to leave behind an artistic footprint. That’s the very least and I’d be happy, beyond that, to give seminars/discussion intros – or whatever formal/informal –  about peace thinking & culture, nonviolence, conflict-resolution; peace, war & art while at the Hotel. Perhaps of interest to both some of the global residents and the Hotel organisation? While I’m an international peace studies professor and have been nominated several times the Nobel Peace Prize, I’m experienced in interacting with non-academic audiences too. My academic CV here.

Continue reading “SPAR – The “Silk Peace Art Road” Project”

Update 2018 – Past, present and future dreams


Oh, how time flies! It’s about two months since I posted here and we’re already well into 2018.

I have an excuse, an acceptable one, I think: I’m working fulltime for peace!

But, first – here the three main points in this belated New Year greeting:

• The last two months devoted to peace

• 8 short videos to inspire you

• Dreams and plans including Lund, China and Venice.


Walking on two legs but still looking for the right balance

While I am a photographer who experiments with what “peace photography” could be, I’m also a professional peace and future researcher and director at The Transnational Foundation for Peace & Future Research, TFF, in Lund, Sweden.

And, so, there are periods during which I have to devote myself to international affairs. It’s not entirely voluntary, I must say, because I really feel I need the artistic activity, the “flow” and the intuitive exploration of the world around me – to balance my research life which is more disciplined, methodical, and – supposedly, at least – rational.

And I would add, there is much much more positive energy in working with art than working with international affairs.

My main occupation is to argue against most of the horrific (nuclear) weapons and wars (can’t know about or cover them all…) and other violence and argue for the simple, logical principle embedded in the UN Charter, namely that peace shall be brought about by peaceful means (Article 1).

Think about it: That is what all the UN member governments have signed once upon a time. And completely ignore every single day.

So I have two identities or persona. I walk on two legs and I cannot always find the right balance.

The shadow of certain world events throws itself over the fields of art and photography where I’d like to spend much more time.

So to solve that impossible equation – two fulltime jobs – what do you do?

Well you study management and you develop practical, daily working methods, you work basically all the time – which is possible when you love what you do and you don’t do it for money (all I do with TFF is unpaid, we’re an all-volunteer foundation). While I have little income, I live a rich life. I don’t complain – just I need 48 hours per day at least and living till I’m 120. That’s all…

Continue reading “Update 2018 – Past, present and future dreams”

McArthur Binion at La Biennale 2017

I have been ignorant about this great artist – found him at the Biennale in Venice in 2017.
So complex and sophisticated, yet so simple and beautiful. Incredible variation in image from far away and very close. Magic. Enjoy.
Here is my 1-min video
More about him here on ArtNews.

Dirk Braeckman at La Biennale

At La Biennale 2017
The very “different” and moving photography by Dirk Braeckman at the Belgian Pavilion at Giardini.

Here a little movie and a link also to his Venice homepage.

“shoot” # 64


The Exhibition, the Biennale and Global Art

What is happening in Lund and in the wider world?

Lund, Sweden
November 10, 2017

Welcome to the re-designed, easier-to-browse Shoot” # 64 newsletter from Oberg PhotoGraphics.

“Shoot” wings into your mailbox infrequently and carries a variety of themes.

The present exhibition is “Three In One”: a few earlier photographs in new editions; 25 unique documentary photos from the liberation of Aleppo in Syria last year and, third, unique multimedia photo collages.

All in all 113 works that created a lot of positive reactions on Night Of Culture in September and Art Night in October.

The studio is open at any time; all you need to do is to set up an appointment on +46 (0)738 52 52 00 or write to:

Continue reading ““shoot” # 64″

Walk Around # 4

As if you were there…Enjoy!
More info on the link. Welcome!

Walk Around # 3

Ultrashort video:
Walk Around # 3

Oberg PhotoGraphics studio – October-November 2017
Make an appointment on +46 738 525200 or

Walk Around # 2

The video Walk Around # 2
My studio in October 2017

Open anytime but by appointment only on or +46 738 525200

Walk around my studio # 1 – Oct 2017

My “Three-In-One” exhibition with 1) some earlier photographs in new editions on on other media, 2) 25 documentary photos from the liberation of Aleppo, Syria in December 2016 – much suffering and much hope – and 3) multi-media photo collages.

This short video – posted on Instagram – takes you around one of the rooms of my studio where there are, at the moment 113 numbered works on the list.

My studio is open anytime but by appointment only on either +46 (0)738 525200 or

You are very welcome online as well as ‘live’.

I’m in the process of updating and re-designing my photo homepage. It is not yet ready but there are works to see anyhow. Here.

And here a glimpse of Art Night on October 21, 2017:


Déjà Vu, Syria And Multi-Media Photo Collages – The “Three In One” exhibit

This post is updated with new images, latest on October 19, 2017

This “Three-In-One” exhibition opened on the “Night Of Culture” in Lund, September 16 16-22, at Vegagatan 25.

Then I did a few new things and changed some of those presented – that’s one of the joys with collages… – and, so, this is also the collection of works that are on show when it was “Art Night” in Lund, Sweden, on October 21, 2017.


And here the poster:


The show has three categories:

Déjà Vu.

Some earlier works that have been enhanced through re-editing and re-printing.
Here is one example, “Natalia And Gerhard Richter”:

NataliaAndGerhard Richter_PhSh

Hope and Suffering in Aleppo, Syria

Unique, strong images of the suffering people who came out from 4,5 years of occupation but were also expressing joy and hope.
You may get an impression of these documentary photos here.

Multi-media photo collages.

The first is pretty self-explanatory. The second category will be explained by myself, in particular during an event 19:00-19:30 for those present.

The third is something new for me, a colourful, happy experiment contrasting the Syria series.

How did I do the latter?

I’ve taken some of my old and new photos and combined them with all kinds of stuff and media: Japanese fabrics and papers, very old calligraphy books on silk paper, old yellow newspapers, art magazines and Sotheby catalogues, cut some flee market paintings in pieces and combined it all into collages – mounted on papers, copper, steel and cardboard.

Here some of it…


On some I’ve also applied acrylic paint and oil sticks (oil colours that you paint with like crayons and not with brushes).
Continue reading “Déjà Vu, Syria And Multi-Media Photo Collages – The “Three In One” exhibit”

Girl from Aleppo, Syria


One of the photos from Syria that will be shown from The Night of Culture in Lund, Sweden, September 16, 2017

“shoot” newsletter # 63

NataliaAndGerhard Richter_PhSh

Welcome to shoot # 63
Summer months of silence only means that a lot of exciting things are in the pipeline.
I welcome all new recipients – and here is the preceding shoot.*
The photo above is my digital gift to you.
It's "Natalia And Gerhard Richter" – a "classic" from 2011 and one of the new-old works I've selected to be shown at:

Cultural Night in Lund, Sweden – September 16, 2017
A diverse show with three types:
• New-old works carefully selected, re-edited and re-printed.
• Photos from the December 2016 liberation of Aleppo, Syria – Hope And Suffering – shown for the first time.
• Small unique multi-media photo collages.
Hope to see you! Facebook event here. More info and photos to come.

Art lovers largest and most handy platform! New photos or mini videos almost every day on @obergphotographics.
Close to 1000 real followers. Let's follow mutually.
Explore here !

Oberg PhotoGraphics' Blog – Photo and other art
– where I write about exhibitions, reviews, post photos and videos about art, events and links. Only positive stuff, no critique.
Browse here!

A completely re-organised, re-designed home with fewer works in larger formats for perfect viewing.
Not ready yet but enough to see, the Art World section is ready.

GlobalArt Magazine
Art news, exhibitions, reviews. Inspiration guaranteed. Selected by Oberg PhotoGraphics for the searching and discerning art soul.
All at one place at your fingertips! 


I believe in global networking, sharing and in positive energy. 
Share with me if you have news or views about photo and other art which I may highlight somewhere.
After all, it's the arts more than anything else that keep us human.
And given the state of the world, the arts are needed today more than ever.

My best and live well!
Jan Oberg


*) shoot is a free and broad e-newsletter which 
• contains a photo gift to you, a moment of meditation;
• stimulates your art curiosity and shares positive stuff from the global art world;
• serves as a gateway to
the online GlobalArt Magazine and Instagram – and also to
• the blog I write as an art recommender, not an art critic; 
• wings into your mailbox freely and inspiringly but never too frequently;
• tells you too – but not primarily – what happens at Oberg PhotoGraphics.