Three new works by: Anders Rindom
The time based piece (a performance) is supported by Henrik Jensen on double bass
The A.P.T. gallery, 6 Creekside, Deptford, London SE8 4SA The 23 November to the 17 December 2017
Over sø og land
The title of this piece is one I have lifted from the opening lines of a traditional, Danish song written with small children in mind. It starts with the phrase:
‘I traveled across lakes and fields, when I met a very old man. He asked me: where do you come from, where do you belong?‘
The song is very simple, yet full of possibilities for improvisation and designed to address the old mans questions. Its aim is to engage, to make children join in. But it also to allows every one of them, for a brief moment to stand out: If he or she chooses an activity and can persuade the others to take part, then that chosen pursuit would be where they all belong. So the answer to the old mans question could therefore be: the country where you clap your hands, jump up and down or whistle on a single note.
My piece, which is an open-ended collection of paintings, objects and photographs, is also about belonging. Its concept came to me as I was quietly working, crafting pieces in my small workshop in East London. The pieces deal with daily activities, the chores and simple joys generated by mundane and repetitive tasks and the complex, sensual pleasures I associate with the nature of art. Together these two separate strands of life manage to focus me, serve as my generator. They energize and invite me to tap into and explore the particular area of London where I work and have come to consider part of home. This is a place where little is homegrown, where each and every ingredient comes from somewhere else and all is in transit. This is a world of gentle friction and subtle exchanges, the current of another kind of authenticity.
My pieces sit between many cultures and speak in many languages. There are residues of Scandinavian domestic life, memories of which I brought with me somewhere amongst my belongings when I arrived in the U.K. many years ago, observations made daily at the little slice of Turkey hidden within Dalston where I work and the firm grip of a Greater (British) London that envelops and contains me. They mimic high culture, but depend on life’s lower tiers for water and nourishment. I have learned to adapt and to treasure all that goes into the fluent identity of my present patch. It has quietly song itself into a place where I belong.
When I woke up one morning just over a year ago to learn that I, with millions of other EU citizens no longer belonged in Britain nor were particularly needed I felt bewildered and angry. We had been downsized, reduced to the size of a bargaining chip in a new magnolia colored, dream-free reconstruction of a place I care for. I hope the many parts, that goes into this piece acknowledges the inherent values in cross-fertilization, the wonderful dialogue there is to be had between many cultures living together and celebrates the amazing conversations I have the opportunity to be part of.
This is a twelve-part sculpture, a sort of landscape in which spectators are invited to stroll around and engage with the exhibits by touch and observation, to experience the empty spaces between the pieces as if it was something very solid and concrete. It is a choreographed walk that is for certain: a narrative about a leisurely stroll spun and stretched out in the confines of an exhibition space. The title of the piece is best translated as ‘A light industrial unit, capable of generating or producing the sensation of springtime’. That is not terribly snappy, so I have deceived to keep the original name, which is in Danish and came to me early on, while working on the Marquette’s.
The many parts that make up the piece were more or less all done during a long stay in Copenhagen, on a residency at the Danish Arts Workshop. Here I had access to a large, modern workshop and state of the art carpentry tools. But given all the opportunities it offered, I had within days set my eyes set on a heavy lump of Swedish engineering: an unloved, cast iron scroll saw, relegated to a dusty corner or the work space. On this simple piece of equipment, much of the work that went into the making of ‘Forårs Fabrikken’ was done.
Although the piece originally was conceived solely as a work in birch ply, two further avenues of investigation turned up as I started to translate my ideas into solid form: a memory of 19th century plant containers, made from simple, planed wood and lined with zinc on the inside, allowing frost sensitive plants to be moved indoors at wintertime. These recollections lead me to add an identical cladding on the internal parts of two of the largest pieces. Furthermore, an urge to define a soft core, a center to the piece that starts off the walk and a quiet, restful point to round it off soon followed. This I achieved by making a number of padded, linen cushions for two other pieces.
Working in birch wood, in a city where I have not lived for half a lifetime brought a number of ghosts back into my life, practitioners from the past, who’s mindset I had to circumnavigate in order to arrive at the port I had intended: a space in which objects are not the center of all attention, rather are servants to the moods and fleeting whims of the visitors: Generous and playful with an openness to a multitude of readings: something that may put a spring in your step, change your behavior and in that simple way alter your outlook, the way you think. To me, that is what sums up the beauty of springtime.
As indicated in the heading for the exhibition this is indeed a modest, one- off piece: a time based work. Its aim is to generate an unrestricted, airy sensation from a limited range of materials: objects laid out bare at launch for all to see. It is a collection that consist of little more than some painted discs, small handmade figurines covered with paper, found plastic fragments, new clear plastic cups and a few liters of carbonated water; but with these simple means I aim to celebrate tradition and the culmination of a season. Although the title innocently translates as ‘A Christmas game’, the word in Danish carries undertones of mischief, even inappropriate behaviour.
A musical score by the double bass player Henrik Jensen will accompany the merging of materials and the attempt to realise a new work. His intention is to quote a traditional Danish song, associated with this festive season and to tap into the pulse associated with the performance of American jazz standards.
This exhibition was made possible thanks to generous support from: Grosserer L.F. Foghts Fondt and Statens Vaerksteder for Kunst (The Danish Arts workshop).