Ditte Ejlerskov, Camilla Thorup, Johannes SivertsenSeptember 29 - November 3, 2018

About the show

SPECTA presents Ditte Ejlerskov, Camilla Thorup and Johannes Sivertsen – three painters, who are all preoccupied with motifs crossing between the individual and the common. The three artists work in different directions; from the intimate and personal, through what we consider common, normal and anonymous and onwards to the relation between the objective and the subjective. Although very different in expression, the three artists all work with figurative painting, and an ongoing research, variation and repetition of the same motif.

Through several years Ditte Ejlerskov (DK, 1982) has been preoccupied with iconic female popstars, specifically Beyoncé, Rihanna and Minaj. Focusing on their attitudes, their appearance, texts and paparazzi photographs, Ejlerskov has investigated them as phenomena, and as an occasion to bring forward a series of contemporary topics such as femininity, race, body and the balance between the private and the public. Over time, this research has let to a broader perspective on the relation between the viewer, the audience, and the object, the pop phenomena. The paintings in this exhibition overall mark a transition between this view on “the other”, the public person, and Ejlerskov’s movement towards the more subjective and personal in a series of paintings zooming in on a pair of hands, taking its own pulse.

Camilla Thorup (DK, 1976) often uses the human figure and houses as her motifs. They are painted as simple forms and in a sensitive color palette, and in this “cut to the bone” presentation, the individual is neglected. But the anonymous figures also express an own absurdity, where both houses and human bodies seem to be containers of life, as it happens under the surface. Through the controlled simplicity time, place, gender and identity is dissolved, so that the figures appear open to the viewer. In a series of new faces – objects cast in concrete – the figures seem like taken out from the paintings, and they represent a coherent group, alike and anonymous. But then again, details like eye color, hair color, variations in the color of the material and differences in sizes apply a distinct expression to each and one of them. They are the same, but different.

Johannes Sivertsen (FR, 1984) paints still life. In his paintings, a strong sense of presence appears, but as a contrast to Thorup and Ejlerskov, the human figure is not actually present in his paintings. But then again, maybe. In arrangements of several objects or hangings of several pieces of white paper and maps, the human being is always present. All the elements express human interpretation of impressions, knowledge and communication. And as such, the paintings are also a constant discussion between that, which the eye sees and that, which the motif represents. Johannes Sivertsen himself says that “investigating if what we call “objectivity” is merely a cultural construction, to me is the most interesting challenge in naturalistic art, because a search to paint something which looks like the real object, reveal the contrasts between what you actually have in front of you and the whole baggage with which we have learned to look at something”.

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