The major spring exhibition of 2012 serves a dual purpose: the exhibition presents the Danish artist Vilhelm Hammershøi (1864-1916) and his art as a phenomenon in itself. In addition to this, the exhibition takes a new – and investigative – approach to Hammershøi by having his art enter into a dialogue with fellow European artists of his day.
A break with tradition
Vilhelm Hammershøi (1864-1916) has often been regarded as a singular, isolated figure on the Danish and European art scene.
The exhibition "Hammershøi and Europe" marks a break with this tradition. It takes the artist down new roads by juxtaposing his works with those of other artists from his era such as Whistler, Carriére, Fantin-Latour, Gauguin, and Khnopff.
Raising awareness of Hammershøi’s universe
The European works at the exhibition act as companion pieces and counterpoints to Hammershøi’s art and help raise our awareness of the things that are at stake within Hammershøi’s sensuous and introspective universe.
All the works featured at the exhibition say something about each other – one work will contribute to opening up another. The display focuses attention on the atmosphere and intimacy in the works, which represent a non-literary segment of the art of the period art.
Hammershøi as a proponent of new departures in painting
Together the works convey a clear impression of the new departures within painting of which Hammershøi has become a proponent. These new departures mark a break with tradition, lifting conventional motifs such as interiors, portraits, and landscapes out of their established contexts and into the modern world.
The works featured at the exhibition serve to document a search for a modern vocabulary that focuses on phenomena and existence rather than on narratives.