"Look, chéri! It's the piece you did of my engorged twat! Right by the painting I did of my "love well" on our wedding night!"
Today, Henri and his Daisy opened a long awaited exhibit at the ARoS museum in Aarhus called 'Pas de deux royal'. It showcases their individual artistic efforts, including Daisy's painting, vestry clothing, and découpage and Henri's sculptures and poems. Berlingske's reviewer gives it 4 out of 6 stars.
Daisy and Henrik have highly erotic sensibilities, as their cooperative efforts easily showcase. Henri may still even physically satisfy Her Majesty from time to time, in a grand gesture of noblesse oblige, and one that may not even be too horribly unpleasant for him despite all the gay/bi rumours. Henrik knows who butters his bread! Besides, these two seem to have a connection that goes beyond the physical.
Which just places Derf and Yrma in a further horrible light. Daisy is such a little devil. Royal to the end, she will eventually have MoreMore falling hard on a sword of her own making, right in front of Daisy as our old girl smiles her sweetest smile, then blows out smoke from one of her eternal fags over the ruins of Madam. Mary is not in the least bit artistic, cultural, interesting or interested. Mary cares about Mary and is sucking the life out of Daisy's artistic son. Derfie's the one with the more emotional, artistic character, while Joachim is more rational and verbal. Clearly. But Fred knows about design and art and even if his taste in music stopped developing at age 17, he is the only cultured one in the clown prince couple. Surely Daisy wished Mary would develop interests in particularly Danish artistic pursuits, it's a country with so much to offer, once she was accepted into the seraglio, given a life of comfort and security, coddled and bowed to. But a monster was created instead. Now Daisy has to give Yrma enough rope with which to hang herself, and this little celebration of Daisy and Henrik's mutual love just further underscores the sorry, rotten bags of goods that Mary turned out to be. As the Berlingske art reviewer says in the review below, "it is also essential that Danish society has a royal couple who take art and poetry seriously." Pas på, Mary! Watch out!
Interview: TV2 East Jutland
Exhibit webpage: ARoS
ARoS is very pleased to be able to present a unique exhibition featuring Denmark's creative Royal Couple.
12 October 2013 – 23 February 2014
The exhibition, PAS DE DEUX ROYAL – an artistic meeting, includes some 150 works selected in close collaboration with H.M. the Queen and H.R.H. the Prince Consort. The exhibition contains both early and very recent works and the artistic themes have been divided into 10 galleries covering a total area of 1,000 square metres.
The Royal Couple's lifelong fascination with the visual arts ran deeper than mere interest, since they both, all along, have had an active career as creative artists. PAS DE DEUX ROYAL – an artistic meeting has been organised as a retrospective dialogue between the multifarious works of the Queen and the Prince Consort, respectively, and museum visitors are invited to enter a universe far removed from the Royal Couple's traditional and representative activities.
The exhibition portrays the Queen as a landscape painter, but visitors' eyes will also be feasting on church textiles, large theatre stage sets, and the meticulous découpages, to which the Queen has devoted herself for a number of years and which have added further edge to her creative talent.
In the case of the Prince Consort, it is sculpture and poetry which repeatedly find new modes of expression in imaginative bronze and marble figures and a flow of poetic diction.
The exhibition galleries render a visualisation of a long life shared and common experiences expressed through creative talent in their own ways and in different media. The Queen is fascinated by nature in its glorious magnificence, never leaving room for figures in her art while the Prince Consort always focuses on animal and human bodies in his sculptures, and his frequent use of the words 'you' and 'I' in his poems serve to underline human relations.
With themes like nature, love, fantasy, and religious aspects, the multifaceted art of the Royal Couple is filled with varying moods and expressions. Under ten headings covering the ten exhibition sections, the Queen's and the Prince Consort's works enter into a mutually conducive dialogue – gallery by gallery.
To mark the exhibition, PAS DE DEUX ROYAL – An Artistic Meeting, ARoS has published a richly illustrated 220-page book with new photos of the Royal Couple and of their numerous works.
Seven authors elaborate on the Queen's and the Prince Consort's artistic production whilst also placing the Royal Couple in an overall culture-historical perspective. The book is available in Danish, English, and French from the ARoS Shop and costs DDK 299.
The Royal Couple's Exhibition at AroS Shows a Couple Who 'Can't Help It'
The exhibition at AroS of the royal couple's paintings and sculptures, church textiles and poems gives a picture of two people who can not help but work with various forms of artistic expression - and fortunately one another to share it with .It is said that all children draw. It also appears that the vast majority of them stop. Some, because adult life institutions destroy creativity. Others are discouraged because they become aware of what real art looks like. Still others simply take on new interests.But then there are some who will know, because they can not stay away from it, that drawing or painting or molding or compiling things into something that is what we usually classify as art.The very first picture in Queen Margrethe and the Prince Consort's first joint exhibition that appears on ARoS Art Museum in Aarhus, is a very small study of a vase of marigolds, as the then only seven Danish Princess Margrethe painted in 1947.
It was a set piece. Along with other students, the princess was asked to look at the subject and try to maintain it. The little paperwork is perhaps included because it appears to be a harbinger of the joy of creating images were stronger and more persistent for the young princess than for most others. But she had to repeatedly get her scruples, if it really was something, or could be anything; what she - with her own expression - went and 'tampered' with.
In the first of a total of ten rooms that make up the 'Pas de deux royal - an artistic meeting' , you will find several examples of other early works, which refers to one of the cases where there is a giveaway for an exhibition of this kind where you put two artists in dialogue with each other because they think they have more in common than not.
It turns out that the royal couple, long before they met, both tampered with porcelain paint. She in Denmark and he 'out there east of Suez', in the words of the old song. They showed copies is as of a later date, but they are still an almost fate-fitting entrance to an exhibition that through a variety of examples tells of two people who also meet and redeemed in an artistic collaboration. They translate together. She illustrates his poems. They experience the world together and inspire each other in an ongoing conversation where very different cultures and traditions meet. But the result of their artistic creations does not begin to resemble each other.
As in all matters relating to the royal family's meeting with the public do, the Queen of course plays the main role. It was also the Queen's pictures, the public earlier became acquainted with when she was originally invited to exhibit for the first time in the arts institution's walls. It was in the Køge Art Museum of Sketches, and it was in 1988.
There has been a lot since. The ARoS exhibition is partly chronological, so it starts with the first fumbling attempts with the illustrations for JRR Tolkien's book 'Lord of the Rings'. It was also at this event where it started to get serious for the Queen with visual art. As others also had done she obviously looked at the art that surrounded her, and thought that she never had really gone there.
It may also be difficult. For most artists, it's a full-time job to work on their art. One thinks of it most of the time. One must make numerous considerations and experiments to get the result to look as though it is straightforward and obvious. One must know the tradition and keep themselves updated with the time.
It eventually is something of a challenge for the royal couple, but they are - say museum directors in all parts of the country - very well informed about art. And then both the Queen and Prince Consort the advantage that they have had the best advisers.
The painter Preben Hornung was one of those who could give Queen Margrethe a decisive impetus because he had the integrity to say what did not work, and what had potential. The Prince Consort had good support for his larger sculptures in Bjørn Nørgaard, whose idiom is apparently because, in flashes they have a knock-on effect and the Prince Consort's early sculptures were with the help of Poul Holm Olsen, who was a lovable and highly competent senior lecturer at the School sculptor. It is also his distinguished collection of African art, which at his death will be donated to Holstebro Art Museum. And just African masks that have had such importance to European art in the 20th century, they have been a significant underlying inspiration for the Prince Consort, together with the non-figurative modernist sculpture and its abstract idiom - when the Prince Consort when not create an ostentatiously figurative sculpture.
On the whole it is seeking through with the royal Artists Couples. Curiosity and hungry for images is kept intact. The exhibition through brands to openness to other artistic expression and the desire to fantasise. Also the lyrics of Prince Consort case. With set design, church textiles and découpage the Queen. Découpage is something different from the collages, although the result can immediately remind you of the other. It is in the Queen's own words a real 'cut and paste' project. You place images - sampled or appropriated from anything - on an object so that they have a decorative character, and then the objects - for example a tray or trash can - are painted many times. Many, many times.As in all other appropriation art originates images from different cultural groups, but there is a tendency for church interiors and bishops' cloaks among the Queen's favourite subjects, and it endows the finished images with an adventurous mood, of course exacerbated coherent series of images inspired by for example, 'Snow Queen' and 'the Wild Swans'.
Among some of the Queen's older works in the exhibition is a series of watercolors entitled 'Landscapes of lost legends'. They are important for the coherence of the work because they suggest a recurring theme in the Queen's pictures and anticipate the series which is still the Queen's most original and a masterpiece of her generation. But first the queen's hold on some of her motives for this are obvious. Just outside the window. Just outside the park. In some of the pictures you can feel the reverberations of Danish modernism, but mainly it's pretty, slightly melancholy images of fine cultured parks, which in a way correspond to one of Prince Henry's poems (here in Per Aage Brandt's translation ) that despite framework provides a glimpse of something quite human: It's an experience you can also have of the Queen's pictures of the surroundings.
Around the turn of the millennium, however, something crucial happens in Queen Margrethe's painting. Queen Margrethe is not the first royal who has "tampered" with art. Prince Eugen of Sweden is another, very famous example. And in the late 1990s Art Brandts in Odense suggested a dialogue exhibition between the two. The invitation struck Queen Margrethe's artistic nerve. Maybe because Prince Eugen was so respected by his contemporaries and for that matter still is canonised as a good painter. The result was the series 'From the outer mountains', which in many ways is quite different than anything that Queen Margrethe had previously painted. As the early legends pictures, this series of paintings are consistently kept in green and blue shades, in capricious landscapes. Human-free landscapes. They look like some sort of sum total of Nordic landscapes, but the unique and interesting about them is that the Queen so to speak, found or invented newly discovered land by painting through her internal images of the landscape and all the way to the coast. Without necessarily having a clue as to what she would encounter along the way. Or how subsequent paintings would be.
It is a lush landscape the Queen portrays. Not without sexual undertones. But you basically do not know if it's just desolate and forsaken man, whether it is a primeval landscape, or the landscape after we are gone, and nature is by winning back and heal the planet. It is a series of pictures that are very open to interpretation - but the consequence is also that the Queen so to speak, had to discover for herself what was on the other side of the landscape of deep fjords and soft peaks. Just by painting through and out of the water at the end of the world.
There was not a boat and waited and allows for new opdagelsesrejserpå the other side of the world's end, so the Queen left off consistently subject and threw himself into new and stones and bones and the heretical art historical motif flower. As Prince Consort think the Queen to be in constant alternation between figurative and abstract images.
The suspension works more places very well. Especially in a dark room with memento mori-like sculptures (among other things, created in collaboration with jewellery designer Torben Hardenberg ) and one in the room devoted scenography that, the Queen's work taken into account, must necessarily have an uplifting character. And although it may seem that the heavy and serious image "Cloud and Violence" in 1997, which - perhaps - is inspired by the dramatic events elsewhere on the European continent, can be placed in a religious context, together with a number of the Queen's bishop will not find the space and quiet, it requires. Surrounded by mirrors and colorful church textiles.
Opinions are always divided on the Queen's exhibits. Some would argue that such an exhibition using space and time that could have been used for others and - implicitly - a better purpose. While others on the other hand, argue that the audience-magnetic exhibitions of this kind - and there are precedents where they have been crucial to a museum's economy - enhances interest in art.
But in any case it is also essential that Danish society has a royal couple who take art and poetry so seriously that it is very important in their life, work and interests. And they simply 'can not resist' it, as the Queen is quoted on the wall near the small image that opens the exhibition.
Daisy, Marigolds in a Glass Bowl, aged 7
Prince Henrik, Torso, 1970
Prince Henrik, Krucifiks
Prince Henrik, Open Heart
Daisy, Bishop's robes, Aarhus Cathedral
Daisy, Transfemmeren II, 2013.
Daisy, Snow Queen, 1997-1999.
The Green Field, 2002.
Bænk, Marmorhaven, Fredensborg. 1983.
Slotsallén Fredensborg, 1971
Photos: Henning Bagger (exhibit); Peter Jensen; Hofmarskellet; Anders Sune Berg; Jacob Jørgensen Film; Torben Eskerod; Dorte Krogh; Jens Dige/Polfoto; Poul Ib Henriksen; Ole Hein Pedersen