The influence of art on work

Can art and art experiences make you a better lawyer? At least that is the opinion of several art-loving lawyers. At the same time, researchers point out that art can contribute to building a company’s brand and creating well-being in the office. Meet the lawyers who let art take time and space in life and in business and who have thus become better lawyers.

I konferensrummet på Berghco Advokatbyrå som ägs av advokat Jonas Bergh hänger två små konstverk, Lennart Rodhes Bollspelaren och en tavla av Pierre Olofsson. Fast egentligen är det inte modern konst som är Jonas Berghs stora passion. Han brinner i stället för renässansen, fylld av bibliska berättelser och symboler som kräver en viss bildning för att uttolkas, och kan tala länge om de många olika sätten att måla bebådelsen.

Konstintresset har funnits länge. Kunskaperna var det sämre med.

Jag gick jämt på konstutställningar, men jag kände att jag ville lära mig mer. Och så förstod jag inte modern konst. Det kände jag att jag ville göra, berättar Jonas Bergh.

The thirst for knowledge led Jonas Bergh to return to the university and study art history. The course, which took place in the evening and at half speed, provided many keys to both modern and older art.

Jonas Bergh’s father-in-law, who was an art historian, also contributed to the decision to study.

I had a lot of fun with my father-in-law. He saw as much as I did not see, says Bergh.

The studies in art history were fun and stimulating. They also provided new tools in their work as a lawyer, claims Jonas Bergh.

In art history, people work a lot with different interpretations. Interpretations are perspectives on a work from different angles. It provides training in seeing from different angles, which I benefit from when I look at problems, he says.

According to Panofsky’s method of interpretation, which has become the dominant one in art history, interpretation always starts with the work being viewed with “the innocent eye”. The pure gaze sees and notes all the details without interpreting them. This method can also be very helpful when a legal problem is to be addressed, thinks Jonas Bergh.

Jonas Bergh

Different perspectives

For Jonas Bergh, it is obvious that artistic and cultural education can contribute to making him – and other lawyers – even better at their work.

Culture in the broad sense, history, literature, art, music, humanities in general, provides a prerequisite to see from different perspectives and to understand people better, he says, and adds that it is also both fun and can help to create contact and relationships.

The meaning of art

Opinions thus differ on the importance of art for practical lawyer work. Most people still seem to experience that their interest in art and culture in different ways makes them better lawyers.

But what about the level of education and cultural interest among lawyers? Quite mixed, it seems.

Jonas Bergh feels that many more senior lawyers are interested in culture, although of course it varies as in all professions. Among the younger people who start at the agency, the interest seems to be weaker.

It is quite rare that I meet someone very interested in culture, he says.

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