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Kathrine Ærtebjerg

The New Carlsberg Foundation’s Art Awards are given in recognition of special contributions to the Danish art and museum landscape. Four art awards were recently handed out. The New Carlsberg Foundation’s Artist Grant is awarded to both Nina Beier and Kathrine Ærtebjerg of DKK 200,000.

From the statement of the New Carlsberg Foundation’s board: “Kathrine Ærtebjerg’s practice as a painter has its own distinct place in Danish contemporary art. On her canvases we encounter characters and objects in a setting resembling fairy-tale universes. Naive, almost reminiscent of children’s drawings and in bright colours. However, this is merely a top layer, a sort of exterior embellishment. Upon closer inspection, her works reveal an abyss of something cruel and macabre. The doll-like figures on her canvases often look directly at the viewer with an introvert, insistent earnestness. As if they know something about us, about the world; something that we need to know yet cannot be allowed to know, something that cannot be put into words. But which can be shown here, in these works of art.”