BIG CITY SHORT STORIES
Lars Arrhenius uses his paintings and animations to tell short stories of life's small incidents. He renders visible man's existential conditions in the big city, illustrating how the peculiar logic of chance can have a crucial impact on life.
DescriptionA grey tone map constitutes the background of 264 circular colour illustrations of eighteen people's adventures in a metropolis. Arrhenius charts the individual characters' routes through the city as vertical, horizontal and diagonal chains, overlapping again and again. Several of the linear sequences are dominated by a particular colour scheme, thus recalling the graphic structure of the London Underground Tube Map.
About the work
Arrhenius presents a series of anonymous figures drawn in a simple, stylised line. They wander around a setting void of light sources, shadows and any sense of perspective. Our otherwise limitless world is reduced to simple sections of longer, more complex stories. The absence of visual detail furthers the plot and underscores the characters' roles as extras in a larger narrative.
Lars Arrhenius' art in generalARKEN's work A-Z closely resembles several of Arrhenius' other works, whether we follow the journey of a banknote from hand to hand (Domino, 2000) or a random person's possible adventures (The Man without One Way, 1999). Arrhenius circles around urban life and a recognisable reality. In the former work the narrative is governed by the principle that any action has a consequence; the latter poses the question, "what would have happened if…?"
At eighteen Lars Arrhenius enrolled in his first art school, and he has been active ever since. He trained to be a painter at.....