Ohne Titel, 2001/Untitled, 2001 | Courtesy Gallery
Per Kirkeby is one of the most diverse artists of our age – a creative polymath. His work encompasses painting, architecture, and sculpture, as well as film and literature. Having completed a PhD in Geology, he began studying at the Experimental Art School in 1962 – a background that embeds his viewpoint in the scientific and artistic worlds alike.
The exhibition juxtaposes the “Blackboards” (1992–2015), and bronzes of the “Laeso-Heads I-IV” (1983), bringing together Kirkeby’s entire canon of shifting elements and themes. The works, all in some way, depict stone and plant structures metamorphosing into human shape, and vice versa.
For the “Blackboards” works, Kirkeby used square Masonite panels. Resembling school blackboards with scientific notation from Rudolf Steiner, and later from Joseph Beuys, who was also interested in Steiner’s anthroposophy, these works share a conceptual premise, and yet they are given an artistic twist by adopting forms with references to nature.
The massive bronzes “Laeso-Heads”, also originate in the amorphous structure of nature, and allow us to see the human form in correspondence with both mineral and vegetable structures.