Callus / Nearer The Time
@ Trine Søndergaard
year: 2019
achival pigment print on dipond
In the series Callus – Latin for ‘hard skin’ and a term for the protective scar tissue formed by trees when they are wounded – we see a number of large scale photographs of damaged tree roots lying exposed and in the healing process. With their organic forms and processes they can be regarded as visualizations of the strangely contrastful and continu­ously changing nature of existence; how life ties itself in knots, expands and contracts, twists and dislocates, opens and heals wounds. As fragments of nature the temporal and spatial anchoring of the roots is not negotiable, but in the photographs they have been detached from their original context and now stand as isolated, floating, staged objects enlarged to the scale of the body. Cautiously they open up from an unknown place and invite us to explore an at once very close and remote world – or another layer of reality.

A series of silent portraits of a young female figure balances in the same way on the borderline between the open and the closed. She only partially shows her face, just enough to make us curious, but her hands protect and screen her from the surrounding world and an exchange of gazes with the viewer is prevented. The portraits of the anonymous girl – who is not a child but not an adult either – stand as frozen fragments in an enigmatic narrative beyond time and place. In an interplay with the knotted tree roots our thoughts are directed towards the encounter between simplicity and complexity, ease and suffering of which all life is made.

In the third part of the exhibition Trine Søndergaard explores how we carry our family history with us and how heredity affects us. In a kind of family-tree hanging we find a succession of portraits of different generations of a family unknown to the viewer. All the figures have closed eyes and in their colourlessness look like busts: sculptures whose history can be traced back to antiquity. In what ways do our origins and families – with all their stories, experiences and patterns of behaviour – influence for better or for worse the human beings we become?


Installationpictures from "Nearer The Time" at Martin Asbæk Gallery 2019