Trine Søndergaard, Interior #27, 2008-12, analogue, 60 cm. edition of 5
Still can mean silent, motionless and ‘even now’. Trine Søndergaard’s solo exhibition at the Martin Asbæk Gallery is ‘still’ in all three senses. And possibly even more. In work after work she explores how low-key and inward a picture can be without losing its inner tension. Søndergaard is considered one of the most significant Danish photo artists of her generation. In 2000 she was awarded the prestigious German Albert Renger Patzsch Book Prize for the series Now That You Are Mine. Later a number of other honours have followed, including the three-year working grant of the Danish Arts Foundation in 2008. The directness of the first works, with their point of departure in documentarism, has been succeeded over the years by greater introspection. Her work is characterized today by an insistent stillness. Nevertheless the pictures speak to the viewer with a rare strength of which the series Strude is a well-known example. The portraits of women from the island of Fanø in historical costumes were shown at the Glyptotek in a solo exhibition in 2010.
Common to the subjects in the exhibition at Martin Asbæk Gallery is their concern with things and places with no function today. They seem far from pure past – or complete present. Rather, you have the feeling of looking at pictures where time plays no role. Still addresses a mental space marked by calm. At the same time the works prompt reflection over how to read images when the visual signs seem recognizable yet the meaning is unknown to you.
The exhibition consists of several tracks that engage in dialogue with one another without being directly connected. For example Søndergaard portrays young girls in modern clothes but wearing gold-embroidered caps from the nineteenth century, called ‘golden-necks’. Although gold is a metal, it can be drawn out into fine threads. The caps possess both hardness and softness. The encounter between the soft skin of the girls’ necks and the metal threads of the embroideries underscores this union of opposing qualities. Various states, times and materials co-exist in the pictures, which create a kind of third space that is neither past nor present, fact nor fiction.
For several years Søndergaard has worked with inaccessible spaces: that is, interiors in unoccupied historic buildings that stand there with no function – as half-forgotten pockets of time where a dialogue arises between inside and outside, light and darkness. As an extension to this work she participated this year in the Louisiana Museum’s exhibition NEW NORDIC, about spaces in the north. And in the exhibi¬tion at Martin Asbæk Gallery new works from the series Interior are presented.
Opening on Friday 26 October 2012, 5 – 7 pm.