A safe and friendly place? Or an eerie setting capable of driving you mad? In this new art project, artists Elmgreen & Dragset challenge our habitual ideas about ‘home’.
Enjoy masterpieces by the Danish painter Vilhelm Hammershøi presented in unconventional company, juxtaposed with international contemporary art.
Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset have a long-held fascination with the work of Vilhelm Hammershøi (1864–1916). Famous for his iconic scenes of semi-empty rooms, Hammershøi is often described as an artist who is preoccupied with the familiar, the intimate and the homelike. However, Elmgreen & Dragset see something uncanny and disturbing in Hammerhøi’s paintings:
There is little liveliness in Hammershøi’s paintings. There is a silence here which is certainly poetically poignant and wistful, yet also ominous. It feels as if residents are not quite welcome in these subtle interiors, where everything seems to be in its proper place, but where life itself seems to have come to a halt.”
Elmgreen & Dragset show examples of their own art as well as specially selected works by contemporary artists chosen by them. The artists featured include Louise Bourgeois, Monica Bonvicini, Thomas Ruff, Francesca Woodman and Njideka Akunyili Crosby.
Some of the artists are directly inspired by Hammershøi. Others use elements that are also found in Hammershøi to express their scepticism of idealised homes.
Elmgreen & Dragset:
The perfect bourgeois homes hold hidden stories about misery and despair behind the glossy surface. And our attempts to fit into such idealised domestic settings can drive us to either resignation or madness.”
The presentation is on display from 27 April to 1 September 2019.