The Play

24.04 – 01.06.2013


Galerie Mikael Andersen is pleased to present the new solo exhibition The Play by Kathrine Ærtebjerg.


In the exhibition Kathrine Ærtebjerg for the first time presents ceramic sculptures along with new paintings. The title of the exhibition "The play" can be translated into Danish as both a game and a play, and it is clear that Ærtebjerg has both the act of playing and the theatrical at stake in her works. In her sculptures and paintings the intuitive, the expressive, the humorous and the sentimental are mixed and the expression becomes theatrical but also poetic and suggestive.


Kathrine Ærtebjerg’s ceramic sculptures can be seen as three-dimensional characters from her paintings. The simple and easy way to shape a face on the canvas and in clay seems to be the same. Furthermore, there is a clear parallel in the use of color. In the new paintings you find a combination of expression, partly a pronounced use of paint that flows and blobs "randomly", and partly a very controlled use of color, as when she paints a face, a flower, a pair of lips, a net etc. On the sculptures Ærtebjerg uses the random that can occur when the glaze melts by burning and creates unforeseen structures, but at the same time one can also clearly see that the use of glaze is managed and controlled.


The motives in the exhibition revolve around the idea of the body as a landscape. A landscape of beauty, fun, transformation and impermanence. In several of the works, both paintings and sculptures, the body transforms and becomes a hangout for snails and birds. Or the body disintegrates into the picture surface and the paint. In other works the characters are complex, theatrical and puppet-like and the transformation is tangible. The human body as a tree is a clear motive among the sculptures. Metamorphosis as the basis of identity is generally a theme that Ærtebjerg has worked with for many years, and in this exhibition the metamorphosis is expressed in a typical Ærtebjergsk way.


Kathrine Ærtebjerg graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in 2002. She is represented in several collections including the National Gallery of Art, ARoS, Arken - Museum of Modern Art, Novo Nordisk, New Carlsberg Foundation and the Danish Arts Foundation.

Photo credits: Jan Søndergaard