Per Kirkeby, ‘Læsø – Kopf II’, Thomas Salis

About Per Kirkeby

Originally trained as a geologist, Per Kirkeby is one of Scandinavia’s most celebrated living artists. Influenced by his scientific roots as well as the gestural works of the Abstract Expressionists, Kirkeby creates expressive, heavily layered paintings, which can resemble geological strata, the Danish landscape, and even the female form. “The role of art is to accept that things break down,” he says, “That’s the only way to get something new to emerge.” Known for being uncategorizable, Kirkeby works across media—including architecture, poetry, film, and sculpture—as well as traverses art historical movements, having begun his career as a member of the Fluxus group.

Danish, b. 1938, Copenhagen, Denmark