Kristoffer Axén (solo) + Jacob Dahlstrup (solo) Press Release

Kristoffer Axén (solo) + Jacob Dahlstrup (solo) Press Release


Opening Reception: Saturday, March 16 from 7-9 pm
Exhibitions run March 16 - April 14, 2013



New York, NY, March 1, 2013 – Munch Gallery is pleased to announce two solo exhibitions: Kristoffer Axén (SE), ‘Once There Was a Shock’, photography and Jacob Dahlstrup (DK), ‘Cosmogonia’, drawing. This will be the artists’ first solo exhibitions in New York, and we are excited to present a strong body of recent work. Both Axén and Dahlstrup will be present at the opening reception, Saturday, March 16.


Kristoffer Axén  Once There Was a Shock

In ‘The World as Will and Idea’ the German writer Arthur Schopenhauer details his concept of ‘the Will’ as the primal, underlying, drive - the endless procession of cause-and-effect. In its canopy aim we sense only its one undeniable quality – its willfulness – expressed in the ceaseless beat of desire branching out as thoughts and emotions, consequently infusing all that gets created and valued.
With a photographic process resembling that of painting or sculpturing, Kristoffer Axén aims with his work to bring out the qualities of this all-pervasive willfulness, seen in the introspective expressions and shapes of figures driven onwards like certain fish that dies without motion. Or through ambiguous, vacant, scenes of buildings and its appendixes that pleads for a security from some prehistoric trauma still remembered and reinforced in dreams.

“The language created by Kristoffer Axén relates to cinema. His world is depicted in almost monochrome tones and gives the impression of being in a non-place in a non-time. The interaction between the scenes represented and the viewers’ imagination gives way to fiction. A heavy atmosphere prevails inside and out. His work enables him to question the world in which he lives.”
Nathalie Herschdorfer (Musée de l’Elysée) / extract from ‘reGeneration2: Tomorrow’s Photographer Today Catalogue’

New York based, Kristoffer Axén, born 1984 in Stockholm/Sweden, studied photography at the International Center of Photography in New York between 08-09 and has been exhibiting in group shows at galleries such as Aperture (N.Y), Musée de E’lysée (Lausanne), Carla Sozzani (Milan) & Azzedine Alaïa (Paris). His work has been included in festivals in China, Denmark, France & Canada and he was selected for the ‘reGeneration2: Tomorrow’s Photographer Today’ traveling exhibition and catalogue, and for the ‘Tierney Fellowship’. His photographs are in several private and public collections.


Jacob Dahlstrup  Cosmogonia

Through thick layers of graphite dust, I work from darkness into light. I am interested in the tonal values and reflective nature of the graphite.  Leaving traces and textures by the impact of sanding tools, erasers and tattoo needles, I rearrange and expose the internal structure of the paper, to evoke a sense of unified mark-making base.  
My work explores representations of space, and search for evidence of our human existence on planet Earth. As a space chimpanzee, clinging to the hope of panpsychism in the event of an eternal orbit, I reach for stories, objects and celestial bodies I can relate to physically or reflect upon mentally.

Drawing is the key to my understanding of space. By observing and mapping a fraction of the 4% visible matter in the universe we as humans can grasp, I feel in awe like a child, elevated into the sky. At the same time, I feel the plummeting weight of the fact that no adult have yet to explain the remaining 96%.
“Cosmogonia” is the Russian term of  any scientific theory concerning the coming into existence, of either the universe  or the so-called “reality” of sentient beings. During my voyage into this vastness of scientific concerns, I collided with the Soviet rocket scientist and pioneer of the astronautic theory Konstantin Tsiolkovskij (1857 – 1935). Inspired by the fiction of Jules Verne, Tsiolkovsky spent most of his reclusive life in a log house theorizing space colonization. He is considered the father of spaceflight, transhumanism and the first person to conceive the idea of a space elevator, after observing the construction of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Copenhagen based, Jacob Dahlstrup, graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 2010. Currently a member of the Danish Visual Arts Association, Dahlstrup, has participated in an array of group exhibitions throughout Denmark, as well as, the United Kingdom, France, Scotland, Germany, and New York among others. Dahlstrup’s participation in ‘Next to the Sea’ in 2012 (Munch Gallery) garnered much excitement and was collected by The Davis Museum.