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Oblique Lattice

20222024  ongoing

A limited palette of one to two colours in combination with the visual dynamics of ascending and descending diagonals form the structural basis for my current explorations of colour and liquid paint. I have incorporated the natural force of gravity as implement for significant but never entirely predictable painterly incident. As the diluted paint runs down the canvas surface, thin vertical stripes, drips, blurs and bleeds of colour occur. Flow marks of feathery plumes bloom.

Atlas  

2020  

A simple grid structure functions as a scaffold that contains, directs and defines successive washes of diluted paint. The painting process draws on gravity to make vertical linear traces of the running paint. Each painting is a concentrate of one colour. A sequence of variables and permutations are set in motion. Irregularities of hand, line and mark, variations in colour, pattern and rhythm determine the perceptual shifts in the pictorial space. As these variables unfold they  become the elements that activate and identify each painting. 

Acrylic paint on linen canvas, 195 x 150 cm each.

 

Länk 

Two mosaic murals for Odenplan Station, Stockholm City Line commuter rail network.

Public Commission: SL Storstockholms LokaltrafikInauguration July 2017.

250 x 1625 cm and 250 x 2090 cm

Located in a central connecting area of the vast underground surroundings of the Odenplan station, the work examines and celebrates movement through urban spaces. The colourful chain-motif represents connection, sequence and succession of events.

 

A vivid childhood memory of colouring strips of paper with wax crayons to make paper chains, and how hanging the chains as a means of decoration activated and dramatically changed the space. A combination of this memory with questions about the function of ornament was the starting point for this commission. 

 

In moving through the station, with its hustle and bustle and moments of calm solitude and detachment, the physical impression of scale and colour shapes our behaviour and response. The large mosaics function as a visual symbol and physical marker to facilitate recognition and navigation in the underground passages. Movement through the space activates changing perspectives of the detailed mosaic surfaces.

 

Chains and Garlands

2011–2014

Painting - sculptural canvas objects - installation  

 

Intrigued by how the aesthetic device of ornament can trigger such powerfully contrasting responses as delight and antagonism, I started to rework images of decorative paraphernalia such as garlands, chains, ribbons, frills and fringes.

The works combine formal and material restraint with notions of excess and celebration. Painted monochrome canvases are folded and unfolded or cut into strips to make garland objects of canvas chains.

 

Achilles  

2010,c-print, 100 x 120 cm

A modest gravestone simply inscribed with the name Achilles.

Mind How You Go  

2010,c-print, 100 x 120 cm

 

Folly  

2006–2008

This body of work is comprised of two installations and a series of seven paintings. The sound of a lone blackbird accompanied the exhibition at Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo (2008). In its own meandering way it is aspects of consciousness and making sense that is the focus of "Folly".

A folly is a building that to a great extent functions as ornament. The best follies are wonderfully mad and eccentric constructions. As monuments to affluence and excess they seem to represent both function and dysfunction in society. 

As a source for this project I investigated the ideas, language, and narratives of "The Fold", a concept connected to baroque art, architecture and metaphysics that poetically imagines the world in terms of infinite folds of movement, time and space. Leibniz, the baroque philosopher and polymath, viewed the world as "a body of infinite folds that weave through compressed time and space".

The carefully constructed stacks of unfixed components create a layered and delicate horizontal expanse of light and colour. Trouble in Utopia draws attention to the ground we stand on and the spaces we move through. Painting as an unstable three-dimensional structure. This work is related to the earlier Lattice and Tartan works from 1997–2001.

Fearful Symmetry is comprised of ten paintings and a constellation of five low, floor-based wood structures that create and suggest a different order and movement through the space. The silver coloured paintings originate from large paint blots that echo and enlarge the making and images of ink blots. During the exhibition the loose components of the precisely stacked two deep by two wide Small Walls get disturbed by unsuspecting visitors. Some people react by carefully rebuilding, others move swiftly on and away. 

The symmetrical images of the Pearl paintings are also derived from large paint blots. They suggest and refer to the history and imagery of Rorschach ink blots. The making of the paint blots requires actions of folding and unfolding to create unexpected images. The blots emerge as random shapes, open and vacant images that await responses of association and reference. A pearl begins as a response to an irritant.

Pure and Promiscuous 

2001–2005

 

Photography is an accessible medium that encourages construction, exaggeration and distortion. Working with photography is an extension of my work with painting, sculpture and installation. I wanted to take a closer look at issues of nature and narration connected to aspects of gender and vanity. As paradox and paradigm I use 'Pure and Promiscuous' to suggest an active condition of mutable circumstance that is open to changing perspectives and unpredictable outcomes.    

I am Nature

2001, series of 8 c-prints, 84 x 69 cm each

The title refers to Jackson Pollock's famous response to the question ‘Why don’t you paint nature?’ 

I was thinking about how we can identify with nature as a physical body, the impulse of attributing nature with human sensitivity and emotion. A recognition of the interrelation of human and nature. 

These images of trees intertwined with fences were taken in central Oslo.

Close

20022004, series of 10 pairs, c-print, 100 x 83 cm (x 2)

Paradoxical phrases such as ‘pointedly foolish’, ‘seriously funny’, ‘bitter sweet’ and ‘pretty ugly', provided a starting

point for this series of paired photographs. The word ‘close’ changes due to context and inflection, shifting meaning from the near and connected into an enclosed place or a stifling atmosphere. 'Close' can imply similarity or a sense of intensity. 

 

The paired photographs invite considerations of reception, of sequence and comparison. 

A collection of 'strangely familiar' episodes, obscure narratives and intimate observations. 

A matter of being close, not closed.

Impression 

2003, series of 6 c-prints, 89 x 70 cm each

Stripped down and making a spectacle of myself, I address aspects of perception, body and gender.

The series titled Impression refers to the body as medium and material for aesthetic creation and site for experience and contemplation. Skin as a border between self and the world. A notion of art practice as a ‘second skin’ that absorbs and protects. What is only skin deep and what gets under your skin?

 

Lattice and Tartan  

1997–2001

Painting - three-dimensional constructions - installation

Imagine Piet Mondrian dancing boogie-woogie in a kilt.

In this body of work, the horizontal and vertical directions of the grid meet textile connotations and questions of clan identity. Scottish tartans are vibrant grid patterns traditionally woven as a woollen cloth, each clan with their own colours, pattern and motto. The geometric framework of the grid is a basic formal device that became an emblem, heroic motto and leitmotif of modernism. Weaving and stacking are foundations of construction. Diverting the modernist grid by referring to aspects of textile history suggests a more flexible and inclusive scope of influence, context, and interpretation.

Ridå  

1998

Textile work as stage curtain for the main auditorium of Moderna Museet, Stockholm.

Public commission: Statens Konstråd, Stockholm

Cotton velvet,  4,6 x 17 m

Velvet is a textile that is often used for stage curtains. In connection with ideas about the visible and the hidden and the terms “on stage” and “backstage”, I became aware of the interplay between the velvet fabric’s contrasting properties: the front side’s dense, shiny pile and the reverse side’s smooth, matte surface and paler appearance. In this work, the ordinarily reverse and hidden side of the velvet fabric is given a prominent position. This ‘other side’ of the moss green velvet is exposed as two paler green, asymmetrically placed vertical stripes. The width of the stage curtains stripes repeats the width of auditorium’s horizontal wooden paneling.

 

 

Containers  

1994–1995

Installation

After the dense symbolism of the Major Arcana, I was interested in colour as a lighter, purer substance, unnamed other than as content. The interior of each Container consists of different combinations of monochrome planes. The reflected colour from these painted surfaces creates illusory and luminous spaces. A vertical opening in each Container controls physical access. The more open the Container is to physical entry the fainter the interior colour becomes. The most closed Container gives a dark and black impression. The remaining four Containers give impressions of glowing red, fluorescent green, blushing rose, and evaporating pink.

 

22 Paintings : The Major Arcana  

1991–1992

Twenty-two paintings, oil on canvas, 192 x 82 cm each

An image of two concentric circles: a small circle within a much larger. I laughed at the imaginative and humorous interpretation of the abstract-geometric image being a 'sleeping man with large sombrero'. The friction between the abstract and the representational, the self-referential and the symbolic-narrative called for closer inspection.

 

The symbols and allegories of the Tarot present a curious and compelling mix of the popular and the obscure.

The twenty-two trump cards and Major Arcana of the Tarot, numbered 0 – 21, can be interpreted as a pictorial procession of life’s significant events. Used for fortune telling, the Tarot is connected to occult divination and esoteric traditions such as the Kabbalah and numerology.

 

In my version of the Major Arcana I tried to achieve balance between contrasting principles and conflicting dogma.

My intention was to combine a formal, minimalist vocabulary with vivid colour, quasi-figurative elements and highly symbolical, metaphorical titles.

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