Nils Erik Gjerdevik
The exhibition by Nils Erik Gjerdevik was shown 5 June - 31 August 2003
The artist Nils Erik Gjerdevik (b. 1962) has attracted great attention in Denmark and abroad with his paintings and sculptures. His new works were created especially for x-rummet and formed a unique universe where giant murals, oils in gaudy colours and trippy ceramic sculptures combine to form a new whole.
Nils Erik Gjerdevik’s paintings and sculptures pretend to be abstract. He plays on our expectations of abstract art; the art form which appears to have been canonised as the most exalted and sophisticated, the most artistic of them all. Gjerdevik’s works almost form an inventory of the various systems of abstraction used throughout art history: the straight and tidy compositions of Constructivism, the meandering arabesques of Art Nouveau, the stringent grids of Minimalism, the Visual effects of Op Art, the psychedelic patterns of Pop Art, the organic autonomy of Colour Field painting, the instinctive nature of abstract Expressionism.
You never quite know how to systematise the images and imagery launched by Gjerdevik’s paintings. Perspectives seem to alternatively point into and out of the image. Large patterns and elements placed on the edge of the monochrome surfaces become the central point of the picture. Winding elongated organic forms are inscribed in a geometric grid. The result is a form of compositional meltdown where everything is sliding, even as it is anchored in the pictorial spaces.
Nils Erik Gjerdevik’s ceramic sculptures tower like toadstools and space stations, stalactite caves and pixie dwellings, wild growths and car park architecture merge to form surreal, organic structures. A strange contrast arises between the apparently architectural structures and the fluid, non-functional sculptural form.