6/15/18

It's Painting Today (just like any other day)

It's Painting Today (just like any other day)

An exhibition by Jon Arne Mogstad, curated by Jeremy Welsh

Trondheim Kunstmuseum, Gråmølna
16 June - 30 September 2018.


Installation shot from the main gallery


It paints today and today it’s all about painting. And more.  Jon Arne Mogstad has recently retired as Professor of Painting at Trondheim Academy of Fine Art and this exhibition will be both a summary of his artistic practice and a tribute to his many years as mentor to new generations of artists. 

Painting is the core of Mogstad’s practice, but he is certainly not a monolinear artist. As a new;ly educated  painter from the Oslo Art Academy in the early eighties he was a member of the artist group Lambretta whose agenda would seem to be to explode all boundaries for artistic practice. Installation, performance and video were part of a practice that would now be referred to as painting in the expanded field. After several years of intensive experimentation with the Lambretta group, Mogstad began to concentrate on his own painting and exhibited frequently at the Oslo space Galleri K. In the early nineties he began to teach at the Trondheim Academy, and from 2004 - 2011 he was Professor of Painting at Bergen Academy of Art and Design, before returning to Trondheim as institute leader and professor.

Between 2004 and 2011 Jon Arne Mogstad was part of the collaborative project LMW (Lossius, Mogstad, Welsh) which produced a series of installations combining painting with video, electronic mages and sound. The group’s projects took place in a variety of locations ranging from the Quart Festival in Kristiansand to KODE, Bergen Art Museum. During the same period, Mogstad and Welsh collaborated on two large commissioned projects for Halden Prison and for the Norwegian Postal Service’s distribution terminal in Lørenskog. Public commissions have over a long period been an integral part of Mogstad’s practice and he has realized large-scale projects for, among others, Telenor Fornebu, Drammen University College and St. Olavs Hospital, Trondheim.

Although he has traversed the boundaries of many different media, painting is central and always at the heart of Jon Arne  Mogstad’s artistic practice. But he is not a “clean” painter - he has constantly explored new possibilities and materials, new combinations of materials, and has been unafraid to combine elements of figuration and abstraction in his work. Since 2012 he has worked with textile colours on canvas, a process that has resulted in works that are, mildly put, explosive in coloration and energy. A combination of coincidence in the way that the fluid colour spreads itself on the canvas and precision in the overpainting with thin layers of white has resulted in some of his most poetic works in the series “Veils” from 2017. For this exhibition, Mogstad has also made a series of new paintings entitled “Rainbow Chaser”, and two of these are amongst the largest works he has created. As the first and last paintings one encounters in the exhibition, these two large canvasses function as a sort of frame for the whole. They are powerful works that have a presence which adresses the viewer both visually and bodily.


With a main focus on paintings from the last few years, the exhibition will map a number of different tendencies in Jon Arne Mogstad’s artistic practice, and at the same time point forward for an artist who has never ceased to experiment and explore. The contemporary art discourse is often coloured by references to “artistic research”, a term that can be read in many different ways. But for Mogstad the central research question has always been: what painting is, what painting has been and what painting can become. Not a redundant question in a contemporary art world where painting has repeatedly been declare dead, but comes repeatedly back with renewed vigour and relevance. Mogstad is an artist with a deep knowledge of painting - its history and its material fundament - and a facility for combining references and tendencies from various periods in art history. American modernist abstraction from the mid 20th. century may be the greatest influence on his work , but he also takes inspiration from popular culture and from older periods of art history, especially the renaissance. His reinterpretation of motives from modernist abstraction is no nostalgic gesture, and at the same time one can not place his practice within the category of post modernism. But one can perhaps describe the painter Mogstad as a “dirty modernist”.










4/5/18

Cloudy and Chilly

Cloudy and Chilly, a new work by Craig Wells and Jeremy Welsh, produced during the residency and workshop  e-x-p-a-n-d-e-d. at Surnadal Billag. A ten minute video with quadrophonic sound. (Title courtesy of a work made earlier at the same venue by Isabella Martin)



4/2/18

e-x-p-a-n-d-e-d

e-x-p-a-n-d-e-d  is a workshop and public performance to be held at Surnadal Billag from 3 - 7 April 2018. Artists working in video, experimental film, electronic sound and improvised music will develop material for new projects over a period of four days, and then present works-in-progress on the final day. Surnadal Billag is a project space and artist residency in Surnadalsøra, Møre & Romsdal, Norway. The facility is housed in a former bus station. Taking part in the project will be Ellen Røed, professor of research in moving image at Stockholm University of the Arts: Nazare Soares, experimental film-maker & installation artist; Craig Wells, Phd research fellow in sound and experimental music at the Grieg Academy, Bergen; Michael Francis Duch, contemporary musician and associate professor in music at NTNU, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology; Sigurd Saue, leader of the institute for music technology, NTNU; Magdalena Manderlova, MA student in Fine Art at NTNU, working with voice and electronics; Jørgen Wassvik; BA student at NTNU working with video and sound. The project has been initiated by Jeremy Welsh as part of an ongoing series of research-based art projects investigating space, place and site-sensitivities.

From the installation 3Rom1/RGB, Jeremy Welsh & Michael Francis Duch, 2018.

11/27/17

Ryōan-ji

Ryōan-ji temple garden in Kyoto. I'm currently preparing for an audio-visual performance, together with Michael Francis Duch, of John Cage's composition Ryōan-ji. The concert will take place at Kunsthall Trondheim on 14th. December.


Ryōan-ji zen garden
Part of John Cage's score

11/23/17

Digging up the past.....

A Facebook post I received recently from a former student featured the photo below, which she had taken at the offices of Trondheim City Council. A digital photo print series I made in the late nineties, probably 1998 I think. The work was entitled "Stupid Sky; Blonde; Bird" and was bought by the Trondheim department of culture. I never documented it when it was exhibited, so this photo is the only evidence I have of the work! The sky was a sunset over Byåsen, Trondheim. The blonde woman in the middle was a tv newsreader. And the bird sitting on the computer screen was a dove belonging to a student, Ebba Moi, who asked me to take care of it while she was visiting her family in Sweden. Thanks to Anne-Marie Waag for the photo!




11/1/17

The Seen at Kunsthall Trondheim

Wednesday 1. November 20.00, Kunsthall Trondheim.

Concert by The Seen 
with video projections by Jeremy Welsh.

Concert arranged by New Music Trondheim.


Terranova

Terranova is a new video work currently showing at Kunstgarasjen, Bergen. The material for the video was shot during a residency at Liminaria 2017, at Terranova Arte e Natura, Arpaise, southern Italy, in September 2017. Terranova is one of two works made as a result of the residency. The first, in collaboration with Trond Lossius, was a performance/projection with 4 channel surround sound, presented at the conclusion of the Liminaria project. The material from this performance will be re-edited to make a two-screen projection installation with multi-channel sound.