Artist Statement

 

              Berlin 2020

 

Through the past years my interest has circled philosophy and the principles of perception and liminality. Two essential themes that not just run to the core of art, but also to the core of the understanding of being human. With what eyes do we see and acknowledge existence and how do we imperceptibly move from one state, be it physically or mentally, to another. These two etherial principles have up until now best been described in written form, and only through coincidence sporadically been addressed within the visual arts. The difficulty in working with these fundamental themes lies in the fact, that one is dealing with principles which to some extent contradict physicality. To see, to change. For me it early on became evident, that to be able to properly address these topics within the arts, one had to rid oneself of subjective narratives and classical ideas of colour, composition and motif, and in instead implement elements that are freed from references, both ideologically and visually. 

 

This led me to geometry. To be specific, the three basic shapes; the circle, the triangle and the square. One of the most fascinating aspects of these is that they are not weight down by abstract associations and they do not refer to anything else than what they are. Liberated from the unconscious need to identify and categorize visual metaphorical elements, one is presented with visual entities which underline our commonalities and bridge divides such as gender, race, religion, politics, social standing etc. 

 

I see my practice as being layered with a multitude of different progressional themes, which all live side by side in both my theoretical and my practical work. They are in a constant flux but nevertheless, solidify in what I see as temporal manifestations, binding all my work together into one work. Continuously expanding, both forward, but at the same time also reversely - a new work not only casts light ahead but also back onto previous work and thereby shifts and alters ones perspective. 

 

The way I work on projects involves putting all the theoretical parts of my practice aside and solely focus on visual aspects and build ideas into preliminary concepts, followed by two-dimensional digital perspective drawings. As an architect works with a preliminary construct of space - so do I. This allows me on one hand to get a sense of scale and on the other hand to digitally manifest the fleeting concepts and ideas. These visualisations serve as proof of concept and are meant to be negotiated into a given architectural context, giving each of my projects a „birthplace“ to which they are temporally bound. Working in this fashion ties my physical production to the interested party and keeps me from producing for production‘s sake.    

 

New horizons will always be out of our grasp and forever elude us, they nevertheless promise us the future, and as artists we are obliged to not just seek them out but also try to make pathways that can show others new ways and perspectives - so when we turn around and look back, we can do so  well-knowing that we as humans have progressed - made a difference - made this place better for the ones that will come after we are gone. 

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© 2019 MIKAEL CHR. STRØBEK. All rights reserved.