Inspired by her own experiences, Norweigan artist Oda Tungodden’s work explores identity and belonging in an ever-globalized society. In her figurative paintings, everyday moments morph into something greater and more ambiguous as bold layers of lush colour dilute and erase parts of their surrounding spaces. Her images are those that occupy a space somewhere between reality, perception and imagination.
Tungodden’s paintings are about stories overlooked, histories forgotten and futures unknown. They are based on photographs of quotidian moments, those of children playing, celebrating and partaking in social and cultural activities. Furthermore, her paintings investigate the stories that lurk behind these seemingly innocent and joyful images. They contemplate what these moments truly represent and question the future that awaits their subjects. Will these children flourish, will they fall, will they fight, will they survive? And who are they? Are they in some ways the artist herself? Like wallflowers, the paintings invite the viewer to look beyond the immediate and search for 'the other story'. They urge us to reflect on who we are and what we want to be. And in this way, Tungodden’s paintings are about all of us – about our shared history and our common future.