With the exhibition, ARKEN wishes to show the wide range of Carl-Henning Pedersen’s artistic career.
Visitors to the exhibition can for example read the artist’s poems, see 15 of the artist’s last, hitherto unexhibited works, and see photos from his private photo album that shed new light on Carl-Henning Pedersen.
Carl-Henning Pedersen the poet
Carl-Henning Pedersen was also a poet. He wrote throughout his life and filled innumerable poetry notebooks. He also had several poetry collections published – for example Drømme-digte (Dream Poems) (1945), Solens latter (Laughter of the Sun) (1968) and Himlens trompeter (The Trumpets of Heaven) (1982).
The writing process functioned for Carl-Henning Pedersen as a means of reaching the spontaneous state that was necessary to his painting process. His poems frequently feature words like ‘sun’, ‘sky’, ‘horse’ and ‘eyes’ – and the pictorial symbols represented by these same words appear again and again in his paintings and drawings. A selection of poems, several of which come from the artist’s private unpublished notebooks, can be read at the exhibition.
Late watercolours exhibited for the first time
In the exhibition we are for the first time showing a selection of the artist’s last works – a series of watercolours from 2004-2005. Throughout his life Carl-Henning Pedersen strove to evoke the same poetic expression as in his first works. He sought the direct, spontaneous image purged of academic refinement and intellectual deliberations.
The 15 late watercolours that ARKEN is showing in the exhibition appear to involve exactly this mode of expression. It is as if the aging artist at last succeeded here in achieving the spontaneous lines of the child.
Carl-Henning Pedersen’s photographic eye
In connection with the exhibition ARKEN has reviewed Pedersen’s neatly ordered photo album, which reveals a strong interest in photography. This has given us a new perspective on the artist’s working method. Carl-Henning Pedersen never painted directly from a photograph, but his interest in photography had an influence on his paintings.
He demonstrates certain photographic inclinations in his paintings, where he zooms in on and out from motifs and moves his field of vision around – just as in a photographic working method. In the exhibition you can see the artist’s private photo album exhibited, and you can read more about Carl-Henning Pedersen’s photographic eye in the exhibition catalogue.