Being a jury is a rewarding but also challenging task. Within a short period of time, in a few days, we are asked to make hundreds of decisions. Should this work be included? Is this going to work out? Does this work deserve a price? What work, among this diverse range of media, deserves to be called "the best"? There is no set of rules and the process for each jury member is very subjective.

In the jury we were from the beginning equipped with the sum of our artistic knowledge and experience, including an understanding of art, architecture and design; an appreciation of a wide range of styles and media; a trained eye and a "stomach feeling". It was on the basis of this subjective experience and knowledge that we agreed not to put numbers on the artists to be chosen, but to let the process and our collective dialogue on the submitted works determine the final selection and the number of participating artists.

We did not want to fall into the horror vacui trap and let the selection be influenced by Kunsthal Charlottenborg's large and beautiful exhibition halls. On the contrary, we wanted an exhibition in which each artist is presented in the best possible way. We want to present artists, not just works of art. To prioritize a focused selection over the kaleidoscopic. Our goal was to ensure the high quality of the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition and to make it an important qualified platform for showing new works. For younger as well as more established artists.

The submitted works spanned this year widely, ranging from professional perfection to the beginner's rawness. The works we saw were different in their medium as well as artistic quality, but some common interests presented themselves while we worked our way through the 618 artists: Many artists explored in the material and motif of the human body and the carnal through the use of different media and forms of expression. These carnal motifs seemed to express an interest in dealing with the concept of memento mori, a reminder of the fleetingness of life, the pointlessness of joy, and death. Perhaps an urgent issue for many at a time when political uncertainty is on the front page of the news. Sometimes art can be a thermometer for a country's – and the world's – concerns, and maybe that's what we're seeing. However, we have also seen examples of works where the body as meat was absent, replaced or paired with digital technologies and robots.

What we generally felt was under-represented were experimental works or works with an edge. We also missed a greater representation of works derived from experimental design and an architectural practice. Whether it has anything to do with the limited time offered to students to experiment and work outside the commercial goals is hard to say. But we wondered.

We are happy and proud of the choice we have made for Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition 2018. With only 19 artists, we are aware that we have chosen much fewer artists than has traditionally been exhibited. But for us it has been a clear choice not to let tradition influence our selection, but rather to be guided by our enthusiasm for the artworks and with them testing a new earth.

On behalf of the 2018 jury, Klara Kristalova (artist, CZ/SE), Alexander Tovborg (artist, DK), Anders Ruhwald (artist, DK/US), Christina Capetillo (architect, DK) and Marie Nipper (curator, DK), I welcome you to the 161st annual Meeting of the European Parliament. Spring exhibition. We hope artists and visitors will find both excitement and experience in this year's choice of artists.

Marie Nipper