Fifth Honeymoon

Sept 13  – Jan 5 2020

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Press Release

Torbjørn Rødland’s photographs are highly charged and intimate, often centered around the human figure. Bodies appears in Rødland’s work both as portraits and as individual parts such as hands, feet, ankles and knees or they appear as staged, typologized “characters” in the midst of a telling moment. Like the artist’s many still lifes, these photographs are made to reflect our complex and layered reality. The results are ambitious and ambiguous images that both appeal and repel.

In his works, Rødland often combines figures asymmetrically. Old is coupled with young, different ethnic backgrounds mix, and the power relations of the models are out of balance: one dominates while the other submits. However, Rødland’s aim is to deconstruct these dichotomies by showing that they are intertwined. This idea repeats in many Eastern philosophies that for instance posit that it is impossible to comprehend good without evil.

The feeling of unease is also often present in Rødland’s photographs. In his works the viewer encounters an ambiguous scene which may be the result of either tenderness or violence. It is up to the viewer to interpret the situation. “I am interested in things that have more layers that can go in different direction, both ways. Therefore, different people can have different readings of the finished image.”

Although Rødland’s medium is still photography, the key work in the exhibition is the new video Between Fork and Ladder, filmed in Los Angeles and the scenic landscape of Norway’s Lofoten Islands. Objects and visual elements from the photographs re-appear in the video, in which a 10-year old boy performs a musical theater song, while cutting out cartoon images of the controversial meme-figure Pepe the frog from a printed cloth.


Courtesy of Galerie Eva Presenhuber, STANDARD (OSLO) and Nils Stærk


Der Tank of the Art Institute, Basel
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Kunsthalle Lissabon, Lisbon
JTT, New York
Édouard Montassut, Paris
Avant-Garde Institute, Warsaw
Cabinet, London
carlier | gebauer, Berlin