When Annette Sloth asked me to curate an exhibition at PULS Contemporary Ceramics, I was thrilled by the opportunity. I decided to arrange an exhibition consisting of eight artists (myself included). Five of them I met through my master study at the Royal College of Art in London. I have followed all the artists that I chose for the exhibition with great interest and respect. No matter whether the artists have a past in fine arts or applied arts, they are all able to unite concept and visual expression in a way so that the result becomes unique and extraordinaire.
The exhibition will be broad and the artists themselves have chosen what they exhibit, the only limit being the size of the gallery. The fact that it is not a thematic exhibition will make it a bombardment of ideas and artistic expressions and will put a special demand on the audience to clear their mind every time they stand before one of the artists.
Kristine Tillge Lund
Clay is the principal medium I use to produce objects that create a dramatic scenario. I blur the boundaries of the found and the made together with the everyday and the fantastical. We are surrounded by objects and they all have their own properties. From early on in life we learn to place these objects into different fixed categories. In many cases the everyday objects end up becoming insignificant, practical tools without any value besides their function. I alter these objects, fuse and amalgamate them with other objects, to enhance the transformation they go through over time. This enables them to be recharged with a different meaning, allowing us to re-perceive and experience them.
My work considers the notion of Home. The space in which we live identifies us . We create an artificial paradise in our homes so that we feel warm and comforted when it is intolerable outside. This space can become our refuge and our prison. I am particularly interested in the balance between security (safety, comfort and protection) and confinement (anxiety, self-imprisonment).
It is through the materiality of clay I explore these ideas, from the fired (the committed object) to the unfired (the uncommitted) to the associations of clay with place, tactility and strength.
Why ceramics? The making of tall, fragile ceramic constructions defies logic, because clay is heavy and drawn towards the very ground from which it originates. By working against the nature of clay, I challenge both gravity and people's ideas about how ”soil” should behave. That is my motivation. If I succeed, my audience will wonder how the sculptures were made and how they remain standing. They will take another look and find answers to their questions in the clear traces left on the sculptures by the process of construction. Hopefully that will inspire them in their own fight against gravity.
Cities are chaotic centres for tension and conflict, where different forces and senses of time overlap and disrupt. Aggression and antagonism are inherent as each individual jostles for their position. My current work has evolved through observations in the urban environment. Through consideration of often-unnoticed elements of the city, I aim to create pieces that act as a point of departure for reverie.
My work often deals with simulation and refinement utilizing highly processed materials, removed from the context of their origin, to create a synthetic experience. At an increasing rate, the primary means in which the world is experienced is through mediation. Simulation has become the surrogate for primary experience whether via the computer, suburbia, or NutraSweet®. This work, in many ways, is synonymous with Disney World or Las Vegas as highly refined and artificial environments. I find myself simultaneously seduced by the refinement and purity of the materials while being disgusted by the implications of their refinement. In the process of being seduced and repulsed, of distinguishing the biological from the digital, there exists an environment for dialogue. In this environment, the dialogue is neither either/or, but a complex system of nuanced relationships that are full of both potential and hope, and significant moral and ethical questions.
Even the simplest objects can hold an unexpected weight. Touch charges them with significance; memories of other people and places wrap them with invisible layers of narrative. The monumental and memorial potential of ordinary things is at the heart of my recent work, where domestic materials reach for an approximation of epic landscapes or architectural details. The theatricality of everyday things - and the surreal territory that lies between ordinary and extraordinary- is what these objects seek to celebrate.
My work for this exhibition is an abstract exploration of the field between the industrial and the organic. Two, in many cases opposite phenomena, are joined together to make a whole. Repetition is a key factor. Repetition is normally related to industry but just as much associated with the functions of the human body. Elements are put together to form a harmonic chain that works independently of the surroundings. It is both within the form and the colour that the conflict – or the relation between the industrial and the organic - is formed.
Daan van Wel
This series of small scale works started with my interest in the landscapes of the German painter of the romantic era Caspar David Friedrich. There was a dead tree near my studio that reminded me of a tree in one of Friedrich's most famous works (Zwei manner in betrachtung des Mondes) and I tried to translate and transform this image in sculptural pieces that focused more on the relationship of the two men than on the moon.
At the same time I had bought a figure of Action Man (the English version of the cartoon action figure G.I. Joe) that I intended to use as a model and I wondered how it would look in a setting with no action at all. I decided to use the action hero figure as a substitute for the pensive protagonists in Friedrich's painting. Not doing their normal manly actions, these figures take on a different meaning. Very naturally these two intentions merged in the studio to form the resulting works. Of the three works shown, two are strongly based on paintings of Friedrich, a third on a traditional Chinese painting (Three men sharing knowledge and wisdom).