NOW HERE, THEN THERE: PART 1
16 Sep – 14 Oct 2023
NOW HERE, THEN THERE: PART 1
40 Years of Galleri Susanne Ottesen
This year marks forty years since Gallery Susanne Ottesen first opened in Store Kongensgade. We’re celebrating this with a wide-ranging exhibition that brings together Danish and international artists who across four decades have presented solo exhibitions at the gallery, and left their mark on the Danish art scene.
The exhibition begins with the beginning: opening on Saturday 16 September with a presentation of five artists that Susanne was working with in the gallery’s original premises on Store Kongensgade, from 1983 onwards. It will feature the first drafts of Bjørn Nørgaard’s monumental work Menneskemuren (The Human Wall) as well as his large 6-part etching Slaget på Rheden (The Battle of Rheden); Troels Wörsel’s iconic post pop paintings some of which are based on wine labels; graphic works, a bronze and brick sculptures by Per Kirkeby; as well as post minimalist works in foam, rubber, wax, and steel by Kirsten Ortwed; and graphic works by A.R. Penck. All of which are pieces that were originally exhibited in the gallery during the 1980’s and offer a unique perspective on that time.
After first focusing on the historical, the exhibition changes focus and shifts towards the many years in Gothersgade 49, spanning from 1989 to the present day. The five artistic positions from the first years expand and dissolve into a spectrum of more than forty Danish and international artists. There are many disparate lines and forms of radicality at work here, from the aesthetic to the political, from those laser-focused on one medium to transgressions across mediums. The title of the exhibition NOW HERE, THEN THERE makes reference to a series of paintings by Stig Brøgger, exhibited in the gallery in 1991, and a travelling exhibition of video works by Marijke van Warmerdam, 2022. It also alludes to art’s double existence in and outside of the world.
Several of the gallery’s artists are associated with central movements, such as Conceptual Art, The Pictures Generation, The Young Wild, Wiener Aktionismus, Eks-Skolen, Fluxus. But just as important is the fact that all of the artists – including those from the younger generation, like Marie Søndergaard Lolk, Nanna Abell, and Pernille With Madsen – defy categories and have continuously transgressed boundaries between movements, expanding such frameworks and creating new forms of expression. The juxtaposition of radically different practices is not only an illustration of the gallery’s open programme through the decades, but also an invitation to discover how surprising dialogues, clashes and synergies emerge across and between works, and offers a sense of the experimental space that the gallery has always been, and still is.
Bjørn Nørgaard will perform an action during the opening of Part 1, the historical section. For the opening of Part 2 on Friday 3 November – the now and the future – a number of artists have, in the spirit of Fluxus, produced multiples.