- Interview with Anita Jørgensen

Dark, sculptural bodies broken by discs and threads of light. Anita Jørgensen works with neon, glass and rustic elements, and her abstract works take the shape of paintings, sculptures and installations. Raw materials like lead, rubber, glass and copper are bent, folded and combined in a simple yet insistent expression pulling the spectator into a quivering environment of unpredictable spatiality.

”The seduction lies in combining ordinary materials in unusual ways, so that it is possible to recognize the material while being surprised to suddenly see it used in a different way. I’m focused on paring down the work and making it as simple as possible while also making sure that it contains more layers of meaning. At the same time my expression is robust and extremely sensible.”

What at first sight might seem to be works with some heft, at a closer look borders on a place between the solidity of the material and an immaterial space arising in between the elements. The sturdiness of the works is dissolved by a special sensitivity to the material and the surrounding space, and the works are strongly dependent on the modulating power of light. Iron is combined with glass, and suddenly the materials dissolve into one another or create something entirely different altogether.

”I stress the interval in my figures, because it contains an important energy. My works have a presence in the space that has to be experienced with the body, but at the same time they offer a concentrated refuge, a mental pause or a space for reflection. Although it has become a bit trite to say so I want to create a space for contemplation and reflection, because I think that especially in our time this is important. To find those moments where you lie on your back and look up at the clouds.”

Jørgensen’s production contains countless site-specific works that involve the surroundings, sometimes by quietly pointing at their own expression and at other times by entering into a more direct clinch with the shape of the room. The works balance on the edge between a marked anchoring in the room and a time-related shifting of their solid materiality. They do not constitute a modernistic project about the autonomy of sculpture but rather move the works to the edge of their own physical presence, into the architecture and the surroundings.

”I’m occupied with the dynamics of repetitions and use them to underline the energy and meaning within the work. By installing several shapes in relation to one another I create a space that spreads out the work between a number of points but also leaves room for the eye to move in and out of the work.”

Lattice Room
While the structure of repetition lets the works unfold in space, Jørgensen often tightens up the inner tension of the works with lattices or rubber bands – as a way of trying to secure the work on the edge between shape and progress.

”The lattice covers something, holds it together, but still invites the spectator to step into the space of the work. It is transparent and looks like a cage, but it’s never a closed cage that it’s impossible to escape from. Rather it creates an extra room and thus helps organize the work.”

Shape and material are brought into movement in Jørgensen’s universe, and the unpredictability and openness in her treatment of them frees the body as well as the mind in relation to the work. Some of the explanation of this freedom lies in the abstract mode of expression.

”The abstract mode of expression leaves room for a different space and a different experience than a figurative painting. If I fold a piece of lead, it keeps the space in check in its own unique way that I find interesting. In the same way my works often have prosaic titles leading into the work without presenting a definite interpretation. They rather establish a movement everybody is free to expand on.”

Sanne Flyvbjerg