Calm before storm – or just expectant waiting. On Monday I shall see over 100 of my portraits gathered for the first time at the National History Museum in Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød, and compose an exhibition from from all these very different works. I have not seen many of them for years. They belong to private and public collections in and outside Denmark.
I have worked with portrait painting next to my production of free works through all the years. It has been a source of inspiration for me to draw and paint portrait studies of my family and friends, but also to paint official portrait commissions. I have always felt great pleasure and curiosity doing this. My portrait painting has never had the same consequent concept as with my other works. Often my portraits are very immediate – created from the moment. Over the years I have tried various methods in order to create a vibrant and honestly portrait. The starting point is always the model in front of me, but at times I have experimented with using only photos. There is something intriguing about photos that I never stop being fascinated by, but I feel I lose some dimensions, if the image is not created with the model in front of me. The exchange between the portrayed and I is a living reality, transmitted to the painting while we are together. This feels more authentic than when I only paint from photos. Of course you can always question what authenticity is, but my point is that I have more confidence in the unconscious choices I make while working in the moment, rather than the more calculated approach one can have with a photo that tells exactly how the image can be built up in 2 dimensions, despite the interesting philosophical and metaphysically aspects photos also contain..
What a great moment it will be when the portraits are hanging on the walls, and many of the portrayed hopefully show up for a happy reunion!
My main concern is how to manage to reach to talk to everyone, without anyone feeling they are second priority.
The exhibition opens officially Friday, Jan. 13 at 11. The exhibition runs until April 2, 2017 and is open all days of the week from 11 to 15.