søren martinsen
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danskeren / the dane, rønnebæksholm 2012 + trapholt 2013
The Danish landscape has been a pivotal point as regards motif in Søren Martinsen’s paintings and video works since 2006. Yet you cannot call him a landscape painter, or a landscape artist, because working with landscapes is a method to Martinsen more than the practice of a genre; it is a direct consequence of his artistic work with the breaking and making of identity formation in the individual as well as in the nation. When viewing his paintings from a formal angle the obvious thing to see is the simplification and the distortion. The motif is recognisable, though absolutely without the realism that characterizes the tradition of landscape painting; this goes for both colour and composition. Details are generally left out – if they are there, they are never to be found in the foreground, where one would expect to find them, they hide in the background of the painting in a peculiar way, and through this they add a strange touch. As regards motif he relates specifically to the tradition, and his paintings deliberately mirror earlier works, but on a formal level it is more difficult to find inspiring precedents.

Catalogue text by Dina Vester Feilberg