From a Bench: Føllenslev
Sunset from a bench while visiting Føllenslev on my way home from Denmark artist residency in 2015. Finished piece is 36x36" oil on panel 2017.
From København to Humelbæk
In 2014 I began my journey in Denmark in search of family roots. Staying in København I experienced the beauty of the old city and the hospitality of the Danish people. Traveling to Humelbæk to see The Louisiana Museum and it's collection was a highlight. 36x36" oil on panel 2017.
In the Harbor: Kerteminde
On my return to Denmark for an artist residency, I stopped in to Fyn, staying near the Kerteminde Harbor. I did two full photoshoots of the harbor creating lasting imprints of reflections, abstractions from the boats in the water. Piece is 36x36" oil on canvas 2017
Mesinge: Head in the Clouds
Mesinge, a little village near Kerteminde, DK. Daily walks and drives I experienced the wide open skies and fields of rapeseed/mustard. Lasting imprints of my time amongst the land in Denmark inspired this piece, 36x36" oil on panel 2017
A beautiful small forest in the town of Hurup, DK. My great-great Grandfather helped plant the forest and it was about 1/2 mile up from the family farm. I visited this lovely space daily while there in 2015 and plan on doing a series of work based on the 4 seasons when I return. 36x36" oil on panel 2018
My trip to Denmark in 2014 and back again in 2015 for an artist residency influenced these works, a series of 11 are already in progress. These 5 are finished. The first 3 will make a debut in Illinois this coming New Year, February 2018. The series will continue and include up to 15 pieces in total. I hope to publish a catalogue of the finished work and send it to Denmark as a Thank You for my Residency time there. Updates will be provided as the series progresses.
My first experience of “hygge" was with my Farmor, but I didn’t know it until I traveled to Denmark in 2014/ 2015, in search of my family roots: My great grandparents were born in Jylland (Jutland). Four of the boys and one sister emigrated to Montana in the late 1800's.
Hygge means comfort for me, and coziness, the land in Denmark also gave me that. Wandering in the forest at Ashøje, the sunset in Føllenslev, the train-ride from København to Humelbæk.
An eye opener for me was at Heltborg Museum, in Hurup, where the family farm is. Jens and Britta, friends I made there (a whole other story) invited me to the Christmas faire. I stood there, awestruck as Danish songs and shared aebleskiver (a delicious apple ball pancake) permeated. I grew up with that at Farmor’s. Tears welled in my eyes. Hygge, is deep inside me, manifested in the simple. I’m forever grateful my Farmor gave me the gift without me ever knowing it. She never got to Denmark, but I brought her there in 2014.
Robbin T. Milne