29.09 – 04.11.2011


Artist Talk about the exhibition at Institute of Art and Culture, Copenhagen University, 18 November. 


The possibility to access something is often linked to the use of passwords, as for example when we use the web to shop or log on to social media. In the recent years Signe Guttormsen has been preoccupied with the choices to be made among the large amount of opportunities the world offers. In continuation of this theme the works in this exhibition are about being inside or outside the range of possibilities - about access.


The exhibition ACCESS presents new works of Signe Guttormsen, two of them are wallpapers with text and photographs. One of the walls in the gallery will be filled with short phrases like "you will," "she must," "they shall" etc. These statements are exposed on a large area and thus become very explicit and the way we act by them seems crucial. The title of the wallpapers "Fait vos jeux", which translated into English means "Place your bets," is what the cropieren says just before he turns the roulette wheel. "Fait vos jeux" in this context means "Make a decision" and emphasizes the importance of the decisions and the choices we make in the land of opportunities.


The second wallpaper contains the sentences from the first wallpaper converted to Braille, but the dots in the six-point system is not intended to be seen, they are supposed to be touched and therefore makes no sense for the seeing eye. Among the dots Guttormsen has inserted documentary photographs of supply installations in buildings, parts that are seen  only under construction but normally non-visible necessities in our daily lives, just as passwords.


The wallpapers will be an entrance (or access) to the exhibition's other works where tracks or signs are machined into the wood laminate and aluminum plates. Both wood laminate and sandwich plates of aluminum have surfaces that are essentially different from their cores, which are reviled when Guttormsen mills in these plates. The tracks left from the milling create horizontal lines, which remind you of messages or signs from the digital world. Parts of the trails are filled with color, which creates a potentially meaningful pattern.


In all of the signs and patterns of the exhibition it is the viewer who has the ability to create coherence and reflect on the possibilities of access. The works have further significance through the demonstration of the storyline. The works are objects that are created through actions and actions create meaning. The color-fields and millings become visual markers of the artist's acts but are also an act of man in the world of opportunities. They are strong aesthetic objects that appear both sculptural and painterly linear, and the actions of processing of the materials are reinforced by the action-verbs that Guttormsen uses in the wallpaper.

Signe Guttormsen graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in 1991 and has further more studied at Rijksakademie van beeldende Art in Amsterdam from 1991-1993. In 2009 Signe Guttormsen moved back to Denmark after having lived and worked in Amsterdam, Berlin and Cologne since the early nineties. Signe Guttormsen is represented at Horsens Kunstmuseum and Vestsjællands Art Museum and has also executed the rooftop at Frederik 8's palace at Amalienborg. Currently Guttormsen is working on a project with integrated art of University of Southern Denmark in Odense.

The exhibition has been supported by the Danish Arts Council.

Photo credits: Jan Søndergaard