December 15, 2012
My exhibition at the University of Manitoba opened on Jan.30, 2013. The show begins with the moodpaintings and then several reconstructed moodpaintings or “reconstructed-abstractions.” See Stemningsmaleris Exibition.
May 20, 2012
My moodpaintings are evolving to abstractions, which I guess isn’t really that earth shattering! Using waterscapes as my starting point, I have played with perspective and pattern and become more concerned about “effect.” Now the visual language of paint– through colour and the physical structure of paint has become even more important. The end result, is reconstructed abstraction with fragmented colour segments that are anchored, but at the same time exist in a shallow space.
January 10, 2012
I have been on sabbatical since November 2011 and have been exploring “moodpaintings’ and trying to depict an “effect.” I have thought about distillment, detachment and creating a tone. I have also been adjusting the height of the horizon line to add spatial tension to the landscapes. Here are two early examples:
September 25, 2011
At my annual art retreat at Clear Lake National Park (left) in 2010, I began to explore ideas for my next body of work. I am interested in the concept of stemnings maleri or moodpainting, exemplified by the nordic midsummer night landscapes depicted by many Scandinavian painters during the 1880s-90s, such as the Fleskum Group. Kitty Kielland, Eilif Peterssen and Gerhard Munthe, explored the notion of mood and imbued their midsummer landscapes with a diffused blue tonality, which I discuss in my Master’s of Art History thesis, “The Fleskum Group, Ny Romantikk and the Emergence of Nationalism in Norwegian Art,” Queen’s University, 1990. Furthermore, there have been several exhibitions of these works during the past two decades, with the most recent being Nature’s Mirror Nordic landscape painting from 1840-1910
Below are a few works inspired by Clear Lake.
I have also been exploring the concept of “stemning” in terms of the prairie landscape and have been collecting “evocative” photographs that create a similar feeling mood for me as the mood paintings. I plan to simplify these vast forms — be it water or grasslands– and capture their “stillness” or “mood” into mood paintings of my own, when I continue this project during my sabbatical Nov./11 -April/12.
February 15, 2011
I am a Norwegian-Canadian artist living in Winnipeg, Canada and also the Art Librarian at the University of Manitoba.
I have always been interested in formalism and the communicative value of line and colour. Although my earliest works from 20 years ago have their roots in collage, the Russian Constructivists, and Frank Stella, the later works — with their spirals and vortexes, have grown out of my interest in the folk tradition of Norwegian rosemaling. Here the act and process of rosemaling has further defined the formalist issues in my work. I am also interested in the use of pattern to control and direct the gaze of the viewer.
Using the language of Modernism, I have continued to explore my concern for “energies” and “forces” and the psychology of the painted line. Abstract painting has predominantly been associated with the masculine qualities of the optical, rational and heroic, but I am interesting in demystifying these values and want to metaphorically promote the decorative, fluidity and the feminine in my work. I will continue to explore Nature and organic abstraction and to work with feelings and impulses, until these become ideas and subjects, which do not overtly reference popular culture.