Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A dream of what happened

Frank Brunner Paintings Oil on canvas

Echo I


Unfortunately I have had no time to transfer much experiences from the Art world to you the last week. It has been packed with wedding preparations and school has been closed so I have filled the days with adventures for the kids,  a sleepover in Connecticut and a sleepover in the Hudson River.

But on Saturday we were invited to the Norwegian painter Frank Brunner´s Atelier for a dinner for 12. His Atelier is gorgeously located in an old warehouse on a pier in Red Hook (NY). An enviable site for any artist.
The whole place and the atmosphere blew my mind. We had an exquisite candle lit dinner with lobster, cod baked in a fireplace and hot raspberries. The doors to the river was wide open to the waterfront and we had the greatest view of the Statue of Liberty. At the table sat the 12 glowing happy people and wow! what a fun night!

Frank Brunner Paintings Oil on canvas
Deconstruction I

Frank was born in Kristiansand in Norway and has studied in Oslo, St. Petersburg and at Yale in New Haven. He now lives in Brooklyn with his warmhearted wife Tone and their two sons (the same age as mine:).

Frank Brunner Paintings oil on canvas
Waiting 2007

Frank has had solo exhibits in Oslo (multiple times), in Paris and in New York.
The 45 degree series I have been fortunate enough to see in it´s full collection when it was shown at the Cynthia Broan Gallery in New York (Chelsea) in 2005. 

Frank Brunner Paintings oil on canvas
45˙ Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Frank Brunner Paintings oil on canvas
And also this has been one of the dark places on the earth #6

The light in this painting is stunning. I feel pulled in to the depth of it as if I am attracted to know more of the danger, is there a light of hope? No, I think it must be a fire from devastating beauty.

Frank Brunner Paintings oil on canvas
Montre with 68 birds

When I came back home Saturday from this fantastic evening I kept thinking the sentence "A dream of what happened". I feel a lot of his work is reflections, not only imaginary but with mirrors and water . There is a sense of having been there, been part of it, but then again was it not just a dream?
A dream that was fortunate enough to not evaporate but stayed on forever.

If you want to see more of Frank Brunner´s work, click here.

With Love Kristin

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mind and Matter

Untitled, 1970
(Gertrud Goldschmidt)

Mind and Matter

Funnily I wrote on Monday that we will see where my mind and experiences will lead me.
It led me straight to the "Mind and Matter" exhibit at the MoMA. And I swear it was coincidental, my heart actually skipped a beat when I walked right in on Gego. It was like I had asked for it, a continuation of the morning blog. Gego as an afterthought must be an inspiration to a lot of artists dealing with etchings and abstractions (like Tina Jonsbu).

Sphere, 1959

The exhibit centers around 12 international artists chosen for their alternative abstractions work.

Atsuko Tamaka 

Louis Nevelson
Hanging column 
from Dawns wedding feast

I was standing in awe together with another spectator, who said he was a textile collector in Bangkok, while viewing the Louis Bourgois books. She used textiles that she had saved throughout her life for this wonderful project.
Louis Bourgois
Ode a' loubli 2002

Maybe hard to see here but there was three beautiful etched silver metal sheets by:

Rachel Whiteread
Untitled nets 2002

And yes by the way, the wedding dress has been ordered. Puh:) One more thing to cross off on my list.
Have a wonderful Wednesday. I am packing my boy gang into a heated car up the Hudson River to a cute town called Elizaville for a visit and strawberry picking!

Love Kristin

Monday, June 21, 2010

A clean slate!

30xA4 Kunstnerforbundet, 2009

Tina Jonsbu
It´s Monday and I am feeling like hosting a new beginning. Something simple, something light and bright. I have been thinking of these drawings by Tina Jonsbu for a while. My wonderful and warm friend Kirsten from Gjennom Ordene made me aware of her since we are all from the same small town Eidsvoll in Norway.

37,5 timers uke, 2005

Last week I concentrated on the dark side of art, this week I am at least beginning with light! Then we will just see where my mind and experiences will lead me. Life is full of surprises:)

7x ruteark med farget blyant,
Kunstnerforbundet, 2009

These drawings have a wonderful precision, like a mathematical beauty.

Stor formasjonstegning, 2008

I find that Tina Jonsbu is an Artist full of vigorous control. If you want to see more of her work check out her website here!

With that I wish you a fabulous week!
Today, will be my last day in the wonderful and crazy world of wedding dresses. Tomorrow I will have to make a decision. 

With Love Kristin

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Sinner not the Saint

David with head of Goliath

My intention for today was to soften up on the brutal world, I have lately focused on. But then last night I ended up seeing a Documentary about Caravaggio from BBC, from the Simon Schama "Power of Art" Series (the accent makes me miss my British friends). And I thought that I had to round up this week with the originator of the realistic brutal art. 

As Simon Shama says:

Caravaggio... Crashes the safety barrier of the frame... it tears away the separation- it reaches you.

Makes something sacred out of the life of the squalid.

Makes the sinner not the saint.

Caravaggio painted himself as the sinner not the hero, the self portrait of himself as Goliath is his offer to Borghese for pardoning him. Although he manages to die from fever after trying to catch (on feet) the boat that his paintings were left on. The whole story sounds absolutely mad. But mad he was with a long history of his own brutal behavior and also murder. But madness as we know it can be behind the most progressive Art.

He lived and experienced the world of the "People" and he brought their imperfections into the house of God. The church accepted and admired his work because it made the people relate, it made them believe.

Medusa 1597

I was always so fascinated with the story of Medusa and her power of turning the onlooker into stone.
Madonna of the Loreto

His Madonna is a Woman on a street corner (he always used "real" people as models).


His Bacchus is sick looking, with not the freshest fruit.


Caravaggio lived hard and his work is harsh. 
But you will never forget the strength and the morbid beauty of any of his paintings.

Mary Magdalene in Ecstasy 

Must your weekend be rich of adventures!
Love Kristin

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Dark World of Otto Dix

Self-portrait with Nude Model


I have spent days looking for wedding dresses now and I am feeling slightly disappointed, most of them look exactly the same and I am in one of the greatest capitals of Fashion! A sense of desperation is hitting me at this stage.... where is the perfect one for me? Will I have time to find it?

Monday afternoon I just dropped it all after trying stupendously expensive dresses at Bergdorf Goodman. (One have to try those as well:) and went to the Neue Gallery to see the Otto Dix exhibit.
That definitely took my mind of the dress for a couple of hours.

We started with his early etchings of war scenes. Deeply painful and revealing, especially Plate 39 out of  50 prints from Der Krieg, made me cry out "Look at this". Maybe because this one was about the people and not warriors? The brutal vulnerable dead nudity is horrifying and I am wondering; is there a baby sticking out of the belly at the bottom? Nightmarish!
Durch Fliegerbomben zerstortes Haus 1924

His brutality in the etchings reflects his anti-war opinions after his traumatic experiences from World War I.

Transport of the wounded in the Hothulster wood, 1924.

Later on his opinions made him quite unpopular under the new Hitler regime, he lost his right to teach Art in Dresden and ended up moving to Lake Constance (A gorgeous place that I visited a few years ago), where he was forced to paint only non-intrusive art. 

Portrait of the Dancer Anita Berber 1925

Otto Dix is famous for painting portraits using the aura of their personalities. Anita Berber was seen as virile to the extreme. She was known for walking around naked in a small corset or a sable fur with cocaine, alcohol and female lovers as her regular attire.

Portrait of Dr. Heinrich Stadelmann, 1922

I must say though, that I much rather want my aura to be painted red and vibrant than this poor green psychiatrist.

Semi-nude 1926

Otto Dix focuses strongly on female nudity and often rather large women with a bit of "sagging" breast and worn expressions. A rather sad unglamorous focus on the prostitutes world.

The Artist's Family 1927 

He did paint his family as well. When I saw this painting in real what struck me the most was the confident and direct look his daughter has, like she could see straight through me.

If you have a chance to go to the Neue Gallery before the 30th of August, I would recommend it.
While you are there please save some time for cake at Cafe Sabarsky. They probably have the best cakes in Manhattan:) and it is a wonderful place to relax after all the impressions.

Monday, June 14, 2010


Kinabaku (Bondage)
From the series Love in Winter, 1979
Nobuyoshi Araki

Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera

Alice Lutz the wife of Oliver Lutz, that I wrote about in an earlier blog, came back from the Tate Britain opening of the "EXPOSED Voyerism, Surveillance and the Camera" exhibit in London and surprised me with the book from the show. An extremely fascinating show I wish I could have attended in person.

The Book is divided into 5 Parts:

- The Unseen Photographer

- Voyeurism and Desire

- Celebrity and the Public Gaze

- Witnessing Violence

- Surveillance

Each part shows photography from the beginning of its history until present time and illuminates the progress of perhaps what we consider permissible.

The picture above is from the "Voyerism and Desire" part of the Show. The reason I am showing it here is because it seems to be the one that hits me the strongest. When I close the book it still lingers in my mind. I don't know if it is the brutality, the sexuality or that I just simply feel haunted by it.

What do you think?

Friday, June 11, 2010

Outside the Box

Jacob Samuel

We did manage to go by one Museum while we were in L.A. and that was the Hammer Museum where I have seen fantastic exhibits before by among others Lee Bontecou after she went out of "hiding".

This time I did not know what to expect, and the promotion picture for the "Outside the Box" exhibit I must be honest and say it did not tickle my senses... 

But, Jacob Samuel knows his craft and it definitely tickled my senses once we got there. I went nearly into a mood of gratifying tears.
From 1988 Jacob Samuel has published special editions of Artist Portfolios. The prints are etched, drypointed and aquatinted. Each project was done together with the Artist, he would either invite them to his studio in Santa Monica or travel to collaborate with the artist in their own environment. 
The first book that probably instigated his whole printing affair was the meeting with an etching of a Marvin Harden when he was about 11 years old. He did his own edition of Marvin Harden in 1991.

Page 6
Natural Selections
Marvin Harden
Copyright: Jacob Samuel

In the exhibit there was 43 portfolios of work by Artists like:
Marina Abramovic, John Baldessari, Rebecca Horn, Anish Kapoor, Guillermo Kuitca, Meredith Monk, Ed Moses, Gabriel Orozco, Ed Ruscha, Juliao Sarmento, Andrea Zittel.
Page 24
Rebecca Horn
Copyright: Jacob Samuel

One of my favorites was probably the Rebecca Horn book, not only was the graphics beautiful but I can't help but love the effect of the accompanying poetic text. Something I have always dreamt of doing myself.
The John Baldessari portfolio is exhibited with a fantastic Black "Box" so the illustrations would cross each other. Hard to describe but I will try to show you here by two pictures as examples:

Page 2
Some Narrow Views:
(either tall or wide)
John Baldessari 2004
Copyright: Jacob Samuel

Page 7
Some Narrow Views:

(either tall or wide)
John Baldessari 2004
Copyright Jacob Samuel

The Portfolio with Anish Kapor´s work surprised me with it´s vibrant colors:

Page 6
Blackness from Her Womb
Anish Kapoor 2001
Copyright Jacob Samuel
Page 11
Blackness from Her Womb
Anish Kapoor 2001
Copyright Jacob Samuel

The last one I would like to show is this spectacular edition of white on white prints with Josiah McElheny´s work:
Page 4
White Modernism
Josiah McElheny 2008
Copyright: Jacob Samuel
Page 7
White Modernism
Josiah McElheny 2008
Copyright: Jacob Samuel

The Portfolios are by editions only, and all of these editions shown at the Hammer Museum has been acquisited by UCLA Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts, Hammer Museum, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The exhibit is on until August the 29th if you live in L.A. if you don´t live in L.A. and you are tickled like me check out Jacob Samuel´s Web Site for more. 

Have a great weekend
With Love Kristin

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Karate Kid

The Karate Kid necklace by
the designer Heist


You might be wondering why I am writing about The Karate Kid Movie on an Art Blog?
But we should not forget the fantastic talent behind mainstream movies as well. Two of these are my good friends Veslemøy and Harald Zwart. Harald Zwart is the director for the Karate Kid Movie that premiered on Monday to an enthusiastic crowd.
The cute little story that I want to reflect on here is how they got the movie in the first place. 
The Film was already in development when Will Smith and Overbrook Entertainment were making a decision about who to pick as the Director. Harald knew this would be a great opportunity for him and of course would do his best to land the deal. But what distinguished him from the others was a model of the set that Harald and Veslemøy (his wife) decided to make. On late nights before the final meeting they sat up after the kids went to bed and built this model:

The fun fact here is that if you take the trip to the movies this weekend (opens tomorrow) you will see that the set looks exactly like this. 

I just can´t help but to think of all the teenagers out there who will have their first date or first kiss while seeing this film. Jaden is adorable in the film and so is the girl. The "evil" guy, the most kind boy in real life. A great feel good film for the whole family!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The purest player is a child

Mimosa 1951
Machine-woven wool pile Axminster construction carpet.
Size:58X36 inches

Henri Matisse

I was reading in the "Art of the 20th Century" earlier and thought that this little segment about Henri Matisse would be nice to share. 
A playful thought before I fly to L.A. tomorrow for the "Karate Kid" premiere. My friend Harald Zwart directed it and hopefully it will blow the charts off the wall!!!

I no longer ask whether and how long my works will outlast me," Matisse told Gotthard Jedlicka, who visited him in his hotel room in Cimiez, in the hills above Nice, his retirement home. " What I create what I shape, has its meaning in the fact that I create it, that I shape it; is fulfilled in the enjoyment my work gives me - my work? My play. I play and fulfill myself in play; and must a game outlast the player? Isn't it's meaning to fulfill itself in itself? The purest player is the child, because it is one with the game. I too play, with the scissors, like a child, and I ask just as little as a child does what will become of the game that gives me such delightful hours." Out of this game, begun because he was no longer able to plain, grew a late work, a manifestation of an outstanding genius independent of medium and tools, his gouaches decoupes, among the purest and most beautiful imagery in art of all time."

Spray of Leaves 1953
Gouaches cut-outs 294 X 350cm

And with that I am off to play!

- Just noticed that I am hitting 3000 hits.
Thank you all for your support!!
I am having so much fun writing this blog and YOU keep me going:)

With Love

Friday, June 4, 2010


I am so fortunate these days to be invited to many remarkable events. Last night we went to the Champagne Reception and Screening of the film about Lord Norman Foster.
After the screening we had a fantastic 4 course dinner at the Michelin Star Restaurant Marea

"How much does your building weigh Mr. Foster?"

The film is an Art Commissioners Film, produced by his wife Lady Elena Foster. 
The Documentary took about three years of filming from all over the world and again reminded us of what this man has achieved during his ongoing career. I feel humbled, he is Howard Roark in persona. (From The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, this novel is one of my all time favorite).

The title of this Documentary actually referrers to a question from Lord Foster's greatest mentor Buckminster Fully early on in his career. A question that brilliant Lord Foster of course had the answer for a week later.

Buckminister Fully (1895- 1983) was an American Architect, Author, designer, inventor and a futurist. A remarkable man with an incredible mind.

He is most known for his Geodesic Domes:

Buckminster Fuller, US Pavilion for the 1967 International and Universal Exposition in Montreal, 1967, Image courtesy the Estate of R. Buckminster Fuller.

And especially for his thoughts about a Dome over Manhattan:

Mr. Fully was an Environmentalist a long time before it was popular:

"Hailed as "one of the greatest minds of our times, R. Buckminster Fuller was renowned for his comprehensive perspective on the world's problems. For more than five decades, he developed pioneering solutions that reflected his commitment to the potential of innovative design to create technology that does "more with less" and thereby improves human lives."

As it says under his Biography for the Buckminster Fuller Institute that operates under his legacy to find Breakthrough solutions to our future. 

One of his greatest inventions was the Dymaxian. A car solution that he came up with (Isamu Noguchi helped on this project as well) as early as in the 1930's. Unfortunately the car was hit by another car on its way to the Chicago World Fair in 1933. The accident damaged the prototype and killed the driver and the project lost its investors. It was an aerodynamic car that could have changed the the whole history of our fuel vasting cars.