Hans Alf Gallery
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Wednesday, 18 May 2022 12:40

Natasha Kissell: Swimming Pool

Natasha Kissell: Swimming Pool

20.05.2022 - 11.06.2022

 

Hans Alf Gallery has represented Natasha Kissell since the gallery was established in 2006. In her newest exhibition, the South African-born painter has created a series that centers around the swimming pool as a social and architectural phenomenon.

 

“Swimming Pool” is a collection of paintings evoking a life of leisure and endless summers.

 

Kissell lived her first 8 years in South Africa where, as Hockney found in LA, swimming pools were not just for the super wealthy, but were widely owned and enjoyed. While Hockney preferred to depict beautiful young men lounging by his pools, Kissell’s paintings are noticeably devoid of humans. For the painter’s own childhood lacked any real adult company, and she and her brother brought themselves up with 2 working parents largely absent in their lives.

 

The nostalgia she feels for her home country is played out in these utopian worlds, ideal escapes, better perhaps in the mind’s eye or in memory. The paintings fit well in the Impressionist tradition, where, for the first time, modern life meant that leisure time was available to not just the rich but also to the working classes, who could enjoy the banks of the Seine or public parks, picnicking and sitting in the sun. Similarly, Kissell points to a world where leisure and escape is part of society, a right, an ideal and something to be sought after.

 

So, it is both the longing, the nostalgia and the absence of the human form that give these paintings their particular and original feel.

 

 

 

 

Jørgen Haugen Sørensen: Before and a Little After

1.04.2022 - 12.05.2022

 

Jørgen Haugen Sørensen passed away in November 2021. Until the very end, he was working on a new exhibition for Hans Alf Gallery. “Before and a little after”, which opens on April 1st, will be the final show of a long and impressive career that spanned more than seven decades.

 

 

By July 2021, we were finally able to go back to Pietrasanta. Since 2013, when we started working with Jørgen, we’d been used to visiting the mythical village in Toscana several times a year, but due to the Corona-pandemic, Jørgens declining health, and the required isolation from his surroundings, almost 2 years had gone by, since we last set foot in Jørgen’s home in Solaio high above the Ligurian sea.

 

We went to Tuscany primarily to witness Jørgen Haugen Sørensen’s comprehensive exhibition at the Prato Museum north of Florence - a tour de force in his bleak and brutal universe, distributed across three very different venues in the historic center of the city - but we also wanted to plan his next project with the gallery. Jørgen was frail, but in good spirits. A prolonged period of illness had left its visible mark on his physique, but his mind was unaffected. We enjoyed a glass of wine on the porch under a marvelous bamboo, having a routine, friendly bicker, and Jørgen and his wife showed us some of the new works, he had been working on: A small, rectangular relief that he wanted to cast in bronze, and a handful of sculptures that were nearly finished. Especially one piece, a sculpture called “Monumental Disregard”, made a huge impression on us, and we kept talking about it, after we’d said our goodbyes and shuffled our way through the dense afternoon traffic on the highway towards Florence. That was the last time we saw Jørgen.

 

On the 18th of November, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen died in his home in Solaio. He left a permanent mark in the world, a legacy that most artists could only dream of.

 

Friday April 1st, we open our doors to what would prove to be Jørgen Haugen Sørensen’s last self-conceived exhibition. Former director of Bornholm’s Museum of Art and life-long friend and collaborator of Jørgen, Lars Kærulf Møller, will open the exhibition.

 

The exhibition contains both ceramic and bronze reliefs, a series of newly produced bronze sculptures, and Jørgen’s final drawings. “Before and a Little After” is a combination of brand-new and recent works that have been exhibited in a different context. This particular juxtaposition was decided with Jørgen long before his death: It’s how he wanted it.

 

 

 

Saturday, 19 February 2022 14:24

Mie Olise Kjærgaard: Muses Having Fun

Mie Olise Kjærgaard: Muses Having Fun

26.02.2022 - 26.03.2022

 

Friday February 25, Hans Alf Gallery invites everyone to join the opening of Mie Olise Kjærgaards new solo exhibition, which is fittingly called “Muses Having Fun”

 

As a figurative painter, Mie Olise Kjærgaard insists on putting women at the center of her paintings: Women, who unashamed and cheekily look the audience dead in the eye; women, who unaffected and freely immerse themselves in their own projects, create their own world. In a way, Kjærgaard conjures up a utopian parallel universe, a harmonic, non-hierarchical, egalitarian free space inhabited by women and children and exotic animals. As an audience, we are witnessing a construction that stems from a deeply rooted desire to challenge the convention of women as objects of the male gaze; fragile, graceful bodies void of will, mindlessly allowing themselves to be portrayed as mere examples of natural beauty. As a flower composition or a forest lake. The women in Mie Olise Kjærgaard’s paintings are not frail or timid, but robust and vocal. They are energetic and make things happen. Here you’ll find no forbidden lust hidden behind well-dressed manners or milky white hands discretely making the Yoni sign in the lap of a bourgeois silk dress. In Kjærgaard’s paintings, both the women and the audience have moved on.

 

Similarly, in the paintings as tangible reality and matter, we are far from the more conventional conceptions of the properties of “female painting”. Kjærgaard paints big, spontaneous, and expressive, her canvasses are often enormous and her brush strokes violent. It is a separate point to her production that no such thing as feminine or masculine painting exists – only painting, period. For that same reason, Mie Olise Kjærgaard’s propensity for scale shouldn’t be seen as an attempt to emulate the masculine painting or inhabit a space reserved for male artists – she paints the way she does, simply because it suits her personality: She is energetic, imaginative, ever-curious, and a bit of a dreamer.

 

Kjærgaard’s paintings inevitably focus on disruption as both a social phenomenon and a fundamental condition of living. Something is only just able to balance; a ship is on its way in one direction, a bicycle moves in another. A giant critter is curled up and has almost been physically forced into the picture frame, which threatens to give in to the pressure. Someone shuffles away with an enormous moving load, with laundry and birdcages and suitcases tied to the carrier of a bike. Everything is just about to tip over at any point. Kjærgaard’s characters are nomads, and her hammerhead sharks and dragons and horses are symbols of the fluidity of life, on the occasional absurdity of everything, and all the existential curveballs that her stoic heroines must constantly deal with. And every time, they succeed, they manage to keep their balance and footing in the maelstrom of life, they maintain their focus without loosing eye contact. And they even seem to be having fun through all of it.

 

“Muses Having Fun” is a crystallized vision of modern mother- and sisterhood, and the courage to play, be creative and true to oneself as a woman. Regardless of whether you buy into the underlying philosophy or not, the exhibition is an unequivocal statement about women’s liberation and feminism in the 21st century. And one thing is for certain: Mie Olise Kjærgaard’s muses steal the show.

 

 

 

Wednesday, 05 January 2022 14:01

The Great Big Winter Show #2

The Great Big Winter Show #2

14.01.2022 - 17.02.2022

 

Hans Alf Gallery kicks off the 2022 season with the annual January group exhibition, appropriately dubbed "The Great Big Winter Show". This time around, the show will include works by Armin Boehm, Anders SCRMN Meisner, Fredrik Raddum, Magnus Fisker, Adam Parker Smith, Ralf Kokke, Morten Schelde, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen and Frank Fischer.

 

 

 

Viewing rooms:

 

Armin Boehm  //  Anders SCRMN Meisner  //  Fredrik Raddum  //  Magnus Fisker  //  Adam Parker Smith  //  Ralf Kokke  //  Morten Schelde  //  Jørgen Haugen Sørensen  //  Frank Fischer

 

 

Exhibition view:

 

 

Wednesday, 01 December 2021 10:53

Anders Brinch: Café Malmø

Anders Brinch: Café Malmø

03.12.2021 - 08.01.2021

 

Friday December 3rd, Hans Alf Gallery invites everyone to join the opening of the last two exhibitions of the year: Louise Hindsgavl’s “The World Ajar” in the main gallery and Anders Brinch’s “Café Malmø” in our project room.

 

Cafe Malmø, which is the title of Anders Brinch’s new show, is a real place: a dive bar situated only a stone’s throw from Hans Alf Gallery in a basement below Havnegade 35. Café Malmø is a legendary bar that has been around since the 1870’s, which makes it one of the oldest in Copenhagen. In olden days, it was a seamen’s hangout. Because of that, a certain maritime atmosphere permeates the café, just as an enormous collection of peculiar bottle openers from around the globe adorn the walls and the ceiling above the bar – a result of the exotic travels of old regulars through the years.

 

Anders Brinch has been a regular at Café Malmø for many years. He particularly loves the atmosphere and the clientele, and he has always been deeply fascinated by the eclectic decor. On numerous occasions, Brinch has channeled the bar in his paintings, which has resulted in a vast series of Café Malmø paintings, where raw, hedonistic drinking culture meets flimsy poetry in what has been dubbed magical social realism. In his new exhibition, we find the biggest installment yet – an imposing painting of two by three meters – but all the works in the show somehow spring from the inexhaustible fountain of inspiration that sits in this innocuous basement in Havnegade.

 

The largest painting was commissioned by filmmakers Camilla Arlien and Ida Mathilde Karlsson, who have been working on a documentary about the iconic bar for nearly a year. While following the regulars and the proprietor Ole, the team has also documented the making of the painting from the first to the final brushstroke as an integral part of both the movie and the tribute to Café Malmø.

 

The opening of the show also marks the 50th birthday of Anders Brinch.

 

 

 

Tuesday, 30 November 2021 16:00

Louise Hindsgavl: The World Ajar

Louise Hindsgavl: The World Ajar

03.12.2021 - 08.01.2021

 

Friday December 3rd, Hans Alf Gallery invites everyone to join the opening of the last two exhibitions of the year: Louise Hindsgavl’s “The World Ajar” in the main gallery and Anders Brinch’s “Café Malmø” in our project room.

 

The World Ajar: The world as a jar with its lit half open; a play on words.

 

When the world is ajar, something is let in, and something is released. Louise Hindsgavl’s jars let you inside (if you dare), tell you secrets from a world, we all know too well, and show you a side of humanity, we all both intuitively recognize and are appalled by.

 

In her new show, Louise Hindsgavl has decided to abandon porcelain for a while to devote herself to the capricious charm of stoneware. And if you’ve ever questioned the acclaimed ceramicists mastery of the clay, you won’t once you’ve seen her new works in real life. Hindsgavl’s glaze-work is encaptivating and dramatic, her jars rise from the pedestals as if they were actual sentient beings, and the artist’s familiar imagery stands out even more in this coarse material.

 

The jar has been a cherished ceramic object since the dawn of time – for storing and as a work of art. A rotating canvas, on which the story follows the shape of the jar, begins where it ends, and allows itself to be divided into tableaus, when the eyes embark on the circular journey. Hindsgavl’s jars are massive, heavy, and colorful, and her stories are grotesque and painful. It seems as though the raw and tactile modelling in combination with the untamed glaze helps emphasize a feeling of ferocity that has always been present in the artist’s works. We know the tension from her seemingly virginal porcelain pieces that always hide violent and perverted scenes in the details. But in her colorful stoneware, the white vail of the porcelain has been pulled away, and everything obscene, entertaining, and titillating is allowed to stand out in all its grotesque magnitude.

 

Still, the underlying theme is the same: What lurks beneath the surface? What disruption and downfall lies ahead? Instead of the material itself – the porcelain – being the vessel of mystery, it is now the form that triggers our curiosity. What hides beneath the tormented masks? How do we find a way into the jar? The window to the world is slightly ajar. Look in. Or look out. The choice is your.

 

 

 

Wednesday, 27 October 2021 10:26

Christian Lemmerz: 20/21

Christian Lemmerz: 20/21

29.10.2021 - 27.11.2021

 

Friday October 29, Hans Alf Gallery invites everyone to celebrate the opening of Christian Lemmerz’ new exhibition “20/21”. The show consists of a new series of paintings and 10 imposing marble sculptures that were all – as the heading implies – conceived in the shadows of the past two, turbulent years

 

In recent years, automated marble carving technologies have become more and more refined and precise. As a classically trained marble sculptor, one would assume that Christian Lemmerz swears off this new technology’s blatant attempt to cut out human craftsmanship from the equation. But Lemmerz is also – in addition to his classical virtues – a relentlessly curious artist, who throughout his long career has experimented with everything from meat sculptures through performance art to virtual reality. So maybe it’s no surprise, really, that this adventurous renaissance man has decided to take on 3D technology and make it his own.

 

For the exhibition “20/21”, Christian Lemmerz has created 10 sculptures by utilizing a very personal method, in which he 3D scans a human being or an object, then distorts the digital model and manipulates the algorithms, before he finally has a machine transform his sketch into a physical artwork in marble. One of the dogmas of the method is that Lemmerz, as a sculptor, cannot work on or touch the finished product: All manipulation must happen digitally – when the machine puts its drill to the stone, the artist’s hands may no longer interfere with the process.

Lemmerz explains the works and his new approach to sculpting:

 

“The sculptures are new archetypes for our digital era. Intentionally, I excluded my own hands in the sculpting process, allowing the computer to manifest itself in the carving of the works. I wanted to redefine the potential of the ancient material of marble, which carries such a long tradition throughout history. Marble is no longer a pure and timeless material. It has been contaminated with and through art history, kitsch, and myth.”

 

“20/21” also consists of a series of figurative paintings that in many ways act as counterpoints to the show’s sculptures. While the latter spring from meticulous planning, digital processing, and robotic intervention, the paintings have materialized through a spontaneous discharge, in which the artist’s hand has worked its way across the canvas in an uninterrupted movement, until a (subconscious) motif has finally manifested itself. Being an incorrigible polemic, Lemmerz offers his audience two seemingly incompatible approaches to producing art and insists that both have a place in his universe.

 

Overall, Christian Lemmerz’ new exhibition represents the artist’s own personal attempt to understand and convey his thoughts on a tumultuous and defining period in our shared history, while with his method and approach he simultaneously charters a new road for both his own career and for the visual arts as a whole.

 

“20/21” opens on Friday October 29 and will be on view through November 27. Everyone is welcome.

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, 22 September 2021 12:08

Anne Torpe: Linear Disruptions

Anne Torpe: Linear Disruptions

24.09.2021 - 23.10.2021

 

Friday September 24, Hans Alf Gallery celebrates the opening of Anne Torpe's new exhibition Linear Disruptions”. 

 

The title of Anne Torpe’s new show refers to the interruptions, pauses and crises that the artist herself experiences when facing the canvas. Aside from this rather personal reference, the title also alludes to the concrete linear divisions that occur on the surface of Torpe’s paintings: The places in which the motif is interrupted by a change of color – and sometimes of gesture – like small pictorial disturbances or transitions on the surface of the painting that on one hand have caused the artist grief or aggravation, but which have also served as welcomed breaks in the artistic process; minute transitions from one place on the canvas to another.

 

Just as these ‘linear disruptions’ are visible to the beholder like a tactile rhythm on the surface of the canvas, they also exist deep within the actual motif. Torpe’s works are predominantly occupied by characters, who are waiting for something. They are trapped in a sort of ‘time-in-between-time’, as the artist herself describes it. One does not know whether they are taking a break from the hustle-bustle of everyday life, or if they have been interrupted by something or someone outside the frame. Regardless, they all seem to be undergoing a transition from one state of mind to another. In this way, Torpe’s works can both be seen as freeze-frames of everyday life, or as depictions of actual crises, which makes for a mysterious duality in her paintings: An acknowledgement of a fundamental coexistence of familiarity and unease.

 

Using old photographs from glamour magazines, stills from the movies of a bygone era, or even private polaroids as her primary inspiration, Torpe evokes compositions and atmospheres that seem strange and familiar at the same time. Torpe has a unique way of fusing seemingly disparate visions into an utterly new and personal imagery.

 

According to the artist, the works in “Linear Disruptions” can be seen as small scenes or stills from fictitious movies; random sequences of a drama, we all want to experience, but will never get to see. The audience is invited into the artist’s universe, where different characters and situations reoccur, but where an actual plot is never revealed. Older works from Torpe’s production occur on the walls behind the characters in some of the artist’s new paintings - but now presented in a different way so that new meaning emanate from them. The same applies to specific objects that reoccur across the artworks, like certain books, a board game, a colorful carpet. All these elements add to the atmosphere of the exhibition and simultaneously inscribe themselves in the ongoing image ecology of the artist’s oeuvre.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, 21 September 2021 11:01

Market Art Fair 2021

Market Art Fair 2021

17.09.2021 - 19.09.2021

 

For this year's edition of Market Art Fair, Hans Alf Gallery presents a duo show with Armin Boehm (GER) and Fredrik Raddum (NOR).

 

 

 

Tuesday, 31 August 2021 09:14

ENTER Art Fair 2021

ENTER Art Fair 2021

26.08.2021 - 29.08.2021

 

For the third edition of Scandinavia's premier international art fair, ENTER, Hans Alf Gallery presents new works by no less than 11 of the gallery's artists: Adam Parker Smith (US), Armin Boehm (GER), Christian Lemmerz (GER), Mie Olise Kjærgaard (DEN), Erik A. Frandsen (DEN), Andreas Golder (GER), Christian Achenbach (GER), Fredrik Raddum (NOR), Morten Schelde (DEN), Anne Torpe (DEN) and Ralf Kokke (NED).

 

 

 

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