Hans Alf Gallery
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Wednesday, 25 November 2020 11:31

Morten Schelde: Ocean of Time

Morten Schelde: Ocean of Time

27.11.2020 - 09.01.2021

 

Friday November 27, Morten Schelde’s new show “Ocean of Time” opens in Hans Alf Gallery. The exhibition is a remix of the recently completed show of the same name from Faaborg Museum of Art.

 

The museum wrote the following about the exhibition:

 

“The exhibition Ocean of Time, featuring Danish artist Morten Schelde, revolves around issues of memory, recollection and our constant efforts to create and maintain narratives. The works presented in the exhibition provide insight into Schelde’s own memories and life story, but they also give us a tangled look at our shared cultural history, extending to art history, suburban life and journeys towards the unknown. With his distinctive hand, Schelde connects historical realities to an inner, imaginary world. This mixture of reality and fiction gives the works a dreamlike, almost surreal feel.“

 

“Morten Schelde’s picturesque drawings are based on a stringent working method, addressing time as a phenomenon. In carefully controlled shifts between rapid hatching and meticulously placed lines, Schelde builds up each scene. With his works, Schelde invites us to consider the connections between ideas, dreams and our memories. Schelde leads the way, but the space is kept open for everyone.”

 

In the modified version of the exhibition, which will be on view in Hans Alf Gallery through January 9, visitors will be able to experience 16 new drawings on top of most of the works from Faaborg – all of them revolving around the original theme.

In recent years, Schelde’s expression has undergone somewhat of an artistic quantum leap as most recently demonstrated in his exhibition “Stages” from 2019. In contrast to previous works that were kept in a primarily red and white universe, Schelde’s new production of drawings appear both extraordinarily colorful and multifaceted. Thus, when entering the exhibition, the viewer is met by a veritable explosion of colour, and when strolling along the 25 works that make up the show, one will find the entire colour palette summoned. Something is at stake, it’s full throttle, and Morten Schelde is on top form.

 

Ocean of Time opens Friday November 27 at 5 pm, and will be on view through January 9.

 

Overview of works

 

Wednesday, 28 October 2020 13:05

Fredrik Raddum: Joy of Sublimation

Fredrik Raddum: Joy of Sublimation

30.10.2020 - 21.11.2020

 

The sculptural universe of Norwegian artist Fredrik Raddum is characterized by a unique combination of humor and somberness, irony and social critique, provocativeness and philosophical insight. The vast majority of works in Raddum’s longstanding production make use of surprise as the primary tool: At an instant, you are both amazed and puzzled. However, the first impression is always followed by the need to look closer and in doing so, the viewer soon realizes that each work has much more than mere shock and confusion to offer.

 

Raddum’s preferred subject is the frailty of the psyche of modern man as well as his search for identity and meaning in a frantic, fragmented and often incomprehensible now. His sculptures can thus be understood as physical manifestations of our common feelings, thoughts and shifting states of mind. Essentially, Fredrik Raddum is a tireless diagnostician of society, who delivers his analysis in bronze, plastic, colored lights, stainless steel and pastel colors.

 

Raddum’s new exhibition, JOY OF SUBLIMATION, is no exception. In his newest works, the sculptor delves into the psychological concept of sublimation, a central theory of the Freudian school, which explains how the enlightened, civilized man channels his repressed, sexual energy towards more “noble” pursuits; especially scientific work, religion or the arts. The Freudian hypothesis asserts that the process of sublimation, where desires and perversities are transformed into creativity and work ethics, can prove beneficial to the individual, because all the bottled-up sexual energy is realized through ascetic discipline and thus serves to strengthen the self-esteem of the Id.

 

In addition to sublimation, Raddum addresses three other central concepts, which he - along with the former - calls the four “repression mechanisms” of existentialism: distraction, isolation and anchoring. On these four concepts, the artist says the following:

 

“How does one accept that life is without meaning? We demand that the world carries meaning, however, this demand is met with silence from a world that does not depend on us. In the gap between Man’s need for meaning and life’s meaninglessness, absurdity emerges. Absurdity feeds off this gap. We attempt to fill the gap by artificially reducing the contents of consciousness. - Isolation: We work our lives away so that reflection will never catch up with us - Distraction: Through a continuous flood of external impressions, a coherent train of thought is made impossible - Anchoring: Find a goal, save the world, have faith in God - Sublimation: Transform the pain of life through artistic abilities. But what if we stopped repressing and instead started accepting the absurd? Albert Camus argued that in the very moment we realize that we are forced to live in the present, we also realize how vast an array of life opportunities the present has to offer. The joy of life can be found in the moment. The overall message of “Joy of Sublimation” is that we must be able to see the emancipatory potential of the absurd.”

 

Wednesday, 16 September 2020 11:32

Natasha Kissell: Through Hardships to the Stars

Natasha Kissell: Thorugh Hardships to the Stars

18.09.2020 - 17.10.2020

 

In a lot of ways “Through Hardships to the Stars” is the antonym to Jørgen Haugen Sørensen’s “Crowding at the Gate of Stupidity”, which is on view in the main gallery. Natasha Kissell’s works were created under the same dire circumstances as Haugen’s, and the situation in Great Britain has been just as bleak as in Italy. But where Haugen looks for meaning and insight in a direct confrontation with the harsh reality of things, Kissell seeks refuge in her family, nature, the English countryside, and the night sky.

 

"Through Hardships to the Stars" is a poetic excursion into the private dream world of the South African painter. Familiar landscapes are lined by exotic mountain ranges, flowers shoot up and burst out of the picture plane, and the perspective is distorted ever so slightly, which makes the paintings appear almost surreal. As always, Kissell incorporates iconic pieces of architecture in her works, but this time something has happened to the houses: Suddenly, a warm light beams from every window, door and crack, and even though we are meant to be standing in the middle of nature, the world open to us, you also get a feeling that within all these houses, worlds we can never access are hidden. For this reason, the artworks themselves contain a peculiar inner tension that is exemplary to Kissell’s oeuvre.

 

Another clear tendency in Natasha Kissell’s recent works is the emergence of tiny figures in the landscape. This is the artist’s own family, her children, with whom she travelled the English countryside during the Covid-19 lockdowns in an attempt to escape the postapocalyptic scenes of the big cities. In this sense, the paintings act as a double testimony of the painter’s escape from the pandemic: They are an expression of Kissell’s longing for a sorrowless ideal world, and at the same time – in a more concrete sense – they are depictions of a very real escape out into the great outdoors. The underlying message is unmistakable: The world is still out there, nature perseveres. And isn’t that quite comforting after all?

 

Jørgen Haugen Sørensen: Crowding at the Gate of Stupidity

18.09.2020 - 17.10.2020

 

WHEN COVID-19 washed over the country in early spring, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen's "Crowding at The Gate of Stupidity" was the first real casualty in Hans Alf Gallery. The exhibition, which was supposed to open on April 17, drowned in lockdowns and assembly bans. By mid-March, we agreed to postpone the show indefinitely.

 

The past six months, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen has spent in isolation in his home in the Apuan Mountains, only interrupted by short excursions into a small forest across the narrow mountain road that runs past his house. Or by the virtual voyages of the internet. He has continued to work tirelessly and with his typical zeal, almost like a mad man, trying to finish the exhibition that should have been, and which has now become a totally different show. Of course it has; everything has changed. A world has shut down, but at the same time opened up infinitely. Rarely has our common fate as a species seemed more tangible.

 

"Crowding at The Gate of Stupidity" is a masterclass in both design and artistic precision. Jørgen Haugen Sørensen has always been a master of the capricious obedience of the clay, yet it seems that recently the ever-polemical sculptor has managed to whet the razor to an almost unimaginable sharpness. Whether it be the bronze sculptures in their impressive weight, the featherlight reliefs in white-glazed ceramics or the drawings, tainted with the unforgiving river of the ink, the energy and the impact is unchanged: “This is, what it is at stake; this is the message. Look! Feel! Comprehend!"

 

The exhibition may borrow its title from previous works, but "Crowding at The Gate of Stupidity" is in no way a repetition. In fact, Haugen Sørensen is more relevant than ever. It is the evilness of life, the despair of the moment and the inevitable decay of it all. It may not be very cheerful, but it is definitely honest. And on that same note, the exhibition also seems to present us with a fundamental dilemma: What do we want to hear, when the knife is at our throats and the world comes crashing down around us? Reassurance or naked truth?

 

Personally, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen chooses the latter. Always.

 

Saturday, 22 August 2020 11:52

ENTER Art Fair 2020

ENTER Art Fair 2020, Copenhagen

27.08.2020 - 30.08.2020

 

For the second edition of Scandinavia's new international art fair, ENTER, Hans Alf Gallery presents a stellar line-up with such names as Armin Boehm (GER), Christian Lemmerz (GER), Mie Olise Kjærgaard (DEN) and Erik A. Frandsen (DEN).

 

Wednesday, 05 August 2020 11:00

Christian Achenbach: Isotopes

Christian Achenbach: Isotopes

08.08.2020 - 12.09.2020

 

Christian Achenbach’s new exhibition ”Isotopes” is essentially an homage to the language and measures of early Modernism. Achenbach describes his output and process as an investigation into the emergence of Modernism subjected to the aesthetic codes of our time.

 

The style of “Isotopes” is consistently non-figurative, and most of the works fall somewhere between geometric abstraction and concrete art. The inspiration for the show is to be found in such diverse places as Harry Bertoia’s sculptures, the paintings of Leopold Survage, Willi Baumeister and Ben Nicholson, and artistic philosophies such as Constructivism, Op Art and Minimalism.

 

Achenbach refers to his loans as “visual quotes”: The exercise is to extract a specific quote from its original context and place it in an entirely new one. In this way, a singular form from a Survage painting suddenly becomes a steel and glass sculpture: An idea reintroduced in a new material; a new context. Because to Achenbach, materials are just as important as the composition of an artwork. Or rather; The two are inseparable to him.

 

Glass in particular plays a leading role in “Isotopes”, where the translucence of multicolored prisms and their ability to capture and disperse light is essential. But also steel is a recurring theme throughout the show, as even the paintings have been mounted in stainless steel floaters. And by utilizing steel this way, Achenbach highlights the purpose of his latest production, the attempt to articulate the dichotomy of material and content: Is the frame part of the artwork? Is the painting an object? Does the material inform the motif, or is it the other way around?

 

The exhibition offers no unequivocal answers, but it isn't really supposed to either. First and foremost, Achenbach wants to force his audience to look at art in a new way. And in this he succeeds.

 

Wednesday, 05 August 2020 10:54

Anders Brinch: Dawn

Anders Brinch: Dawn

08.08.2020 - 12.09.2020

 

Anders Brinch’s exhibition “Dawn” consists of a new series of paintings, in which we are invited on a Dionysian voyage with Death as our companion through grainy landscapes at dawn, where night becomes day.

 

We are presented with classic Brinch motifs, like the neorealist bar scene with skeletons playing billiards and washed-up aliens, drinking themselves further and further into morning oblivion. But we also find references to American cinema and to the bible, as we’re suddenly having dinner with Adam and Eve both dressed as Death in the Garden of Eden. Or when we’re teleported back in time thousands of years, where two cavemen are roasting a mammoth, they killed – or even millions of years; to the time where dinosaurs roamed.

 

The paintings are kept in warm, grainy nuances that emulate the flickering state of non-existence that characterizes dawn, and the individual motifs are visual metaphors for the inevitable transformation and change in the unending cycle of life. According to the artist, the works are to be seen as small, poetic and melancholic memento mori: “Remember – you have to die!”

 

And so, we remember this, but as we move about in the dim light of Anders Brinch’s personal dawn, in the slight gap between night and day, among aliens, dinosaurs, and intoxicated skeletons, the realization somehow doesn’t seem that cruel. Rarely has death been so magnificent.

 

Wednesday, 27 May 2020 12:09

Andreas Golder

ANDREAS GOLDER, Russia/Germany

 

 

Andreas Golder (b. 1979) was born in Yekatarinburg, Russia, but has lived and worked in Germany since the '90s.

Andreas Golder cannibalizes the history of art, filtering it through the lenses of nightlife and pop culture to create nihilistic figural paintings dealing with the medium’s “eternal subjects”—love, decay, and the circle of life. The Berlin artist creates monstrous characters that call to mind the work of Francis Bacon—grotesques painted in his signature pink that combine notes of Rembrandt, Rubens, Manet, and Matisse with a slaughterhouse sensibility.

 

Golder works with a soundtrack of death metal music or Baroque opera to find a place of meditation as he paints portraits of his friends and himself, often in images that question his role within the continuum of art history. Such sinister forms are also present in his sculptures, which he calls memorials to the lowest classes.

 

 CV

 

Available works:

 

 

 

 

Selected works:

 

Wednesday, 27 May 2020 11:49

Andreas Golder: 100 kg Self-Esteem

Andreas Golder: 100 kg Self-Esteem

29.05.2020 - 27.06.2020

 

A PRODIGAL SON RETURNS

 

Andreas Golder’s new show, ”100 kg Self-Esteem”, marks the long-awaited return of one of European Art’s prodigal sons. In the ‘00s, Golder was heralded as the greatest talent of his generation by a leading, international art magazine, his name was everywhere, and the rebellious painter and sculptor could practically pick and choose between galleries and museums. Andreas Golder was a rock star.

 

But as a consequence of a series of questionable career moves and sudden changes in style, which – among other things – meant that at the height of his success he parted ways with British juggernaut White Cube, arguably the trendiest gallery of the time, Russian-born Andreas Golder slowly but steadily started disappearing down a hole, he seemed to have spent all his waking energy digging. An epic downfall seemed eminent.

 

But talent does not rust – not even in the face of an ever-searching, self-destructive ego. Golder was picked up by his friends, he got a studio spot with Jonas Burgert and gradually started painting his way back to the art scene.

 

Today, at the age of 40, the wayward kid from Yekaterinburg has his feet back on solid ground. In “100 kg Self-Esteem”, Andreas Golder proves that his artistic talent and precision is utterly unabated. The centerpiece of the show is a typical Golder sculpture in painted bronze: A small, obese lump of a man, who observes his own, naked body in the mirror in all its monstrous ugliness; self-absorbed and disinterested in the world around him. The sculpture is accompanied by a series of smaller oil paintings and a handful of watercolors that all somehow mirror the peculiar being in the room. The brushstrokes and the colors are expressive, assertive and – most of all – uncompromising. It is Golder at his finest.

 

The works of Andreas Golder are held in several of the most prominent private collections in Denmark and internationally, and Arken Museum of Modern Art in Copenhagen, where his 2008 solo exhibition “It has my name on it” took place, owns a number of defining pieces.

 

Wednesday, 27 May 2020 11:44

Mie Olise Kjærgaard: Hysteria

Mie Olise Kjærgaard: Hysteria

29.05.2020 - 27.06.2020

 

Friday May 29th, Hans Alf Gallery invites everyone to celebrate the opening of Mie Olise Kjærgaard’s new show “Hysteria” in our main gallery.

 

In “Hysteria”, the audience is welcomed into a postapocalyptic utopia, where woman have finally gained the power and respect, they deserve. In a series of imposing and colorful paintings, Kjærgaard portrays the archetype of the strong and silent woman, who has been overlooked, oppressed and disenfranchised throughout history, but who is in fact – according to the artist – the backbone of every society.

 

Kjærgaard herself sees “Hysteria” as a natural continuation of “News from Nowhere” from 2018, where through a comprehensive series of cityscapes and tableaus she depicted life in a fictional, matriarchal metropolis called “Moirania”. In “Hysteria”, the highly versatile painter zeroes in on the women, who make up everyday life in Moirania. They play tennis, they bike, they work, they form picket lines and move about by horseback – all with the same, stern and impenetrable gaze towards the viewer, who is left almost embarrassed.

 

“Hysteria” shows a brand-new side to Mie Olise Kjærgaard, and the show represents an indisputable quantum leap in her artistic practice. After an energetic (and refreshing) foray into what is generally referred to as “bad painting”, Kjærgaard’s new body of work is a masterly demonstration of her technique and coloristic ability. A delight to the eye and a call for contemplation.

 

Art historian and curator, Christina Wilson, writes the following about the show:

 

"In a world, where women must still fight for equality, be it in arts or boardrooms, Kjærgaard borrows the title of her show from the Greek “hystereraos”, which is an obsolete medical term meaning uterus. Throughout history, women have been said to be hysterical, whenever they exhibited dramatic, attention seeking or theatrical behaviour. Critical, female psychoanalysts have pointed out that hysterical symptoms ought to be perceived as valves for the oppression of the free expression of women."

 

"Mie Olise Kjærgaard operates on multiple levels in her works. Her dreams of a new social order run in parallel with the notion of timelessness. With her staunch, energetic women, she wants to rebel against the infamous male gaze, of which film critic Laura Mulvey wrote in her 1975 essay “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema”. That specific male gaze, which maintains and perpetuates women as sexualized beings, confined in the picture frame as scintillating odalisques or sacred madonnas."

 

"In HYSTERIA, Kjærgaard has chosen to show us fierce, emancipated women, because even though we claim that equality is a Danish core value, power is still unevenly distributed among the two genders."

 

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