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Jury statement 2019
Three Cheers for Diversity!

A plethora of competences comes together at the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition – visual art, architecture, arts and craft, and design – and, as an integral part of these disciplines, vigorous derivations of media such as painting, photography, performance, sound art, drawing, jewellery, sculpture, and installations. In other words, a kaleidoscopic picture of creativity and artistic nerve. This year’s jury, composed of representatives from architecture, visual art, design, and curatorial practice, aptly reflects the fact that, when spring approaches, all these art forms converge at Kunsthal Charlottenborg. Professional exchange and discussion about the nature of art and its contexts generate a superb energy – hopefully evident in the choice of works for this year’s show.

Anyone who has had to choose one thing above another knows that it comes at a cost. Moreover, the process was further hampered by the fact that there were a great many artists to choose from this year. And they are excellent. They examine, experiment, negotiate space, challenge themselves and their media. In other words, there is much at stake in their works. It is evident in the really outstanding cases and in a good show, this dialogue between artist and work is conveyed so that the audience, too, can listen, appreciate, and sense the artistic work, the conceptual intention, and the personal presentness in the art. We, the jury, hope that, with this specific selection of artists, we have succeeded in translating what we have seen to the thousands of guests visiting the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition 2019.

Talking about quality often amounts to abstract, vague interchanges. Nonetheless, our distinct priority has been to perform a professional, but also intuitive assessment of excellency, of unquestionable quality. We have emphasised a correlation between what the artist wants to express and what we, the audience, see. Furthermore, artists responding to their medium, applying aesthetic, conceptual, or analytical reflections on its capabilities. Finally, we believe that the works should have common relevance and address themes that resonate with the world around us. This is what quality art is capable of.

Although the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition is an exhibition, where various artistic disciplines converge and where the participating artists, on applying, need to consider which category their work belongs to, we have, nevertheless, decided to completely ignore such categories in our assessment. We have considered all contributions as art and assessed them as such. Therefore, the works included in this year’s Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition have a clear artistic ambition: the artists’ works go beyond their own categories, gravitating towards art and the common space of art.

The actual exhibition has, as historically prescribed by the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition, a predominance of young artists. There are plenty of opportunities to get a taste of the latest hot trends in expressions using sound, video, installation, performance, etc. Breaking news is certainly not a quality per se, but even so. Irrespective of how many attempts have been made at doing away with painting as a medium, it is still alive and kicking. All of it a bid to show what young art is capable of in all its diversity, variation, and complexity.

As with earlier exhibitions, there is a sense of release in the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition 2019 inasmuch as this is the artists’ exhibition. It is about them, the works they have submitted, and what they want to impart to the world. The artists were selected by the practising artists (who constitute the majority) of the jury, all of whom are especially sensible to and knowledgable about the art of creating. From an organisational perspective, the realisation of the Spring Exhibition is supported by the Board of the Charlottenborg Foundation, which is exclusively made up of artists. Sadly, this is no longer common practice.

Art communicates in a variety of languages and we are not always good at understanding all its dialects. We have deselected an unbelievably great number of artists – it is a premise – but it does not necessarily mean that those deselected are not good. The selections reflect the jury’s diverse composition; that is the fact of it. Fortunately, we have also made a great many positive selections – works which each of us finds contain strong artistic elements and which – not least – fit well into the exhibition as a whole. Our heartfelt thanks to the participating artists for their engagement and hard work. We would encourage you to try again if you have something on your mind that needs to be told.

Thank you also to the Charlottenborg Foundation for the challenge, the trust, the instructive process – and all the accompanying professional challenges they brought to bear. We loved it all.

On behalf of the 2019 jury, Anna Bjerger (artist, SE), Tove Storch (artist, DK), Linda Korndal (architect, DK), Irene Griegst (jewellery artist, MA/DK), and Anna Krogh (curator, DK), I hope visitors will enjoy the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition 2019.

Anna Krogh, curator, Brandts – Museum of Art and Visual Culture