CHART ART FAIR 2016
At this year’s Chart Art Fair Nils Stærk presents a dual presentation with ceramic sculptures and a drawing installation by Nils Erik Gjerdevik (b. 1962, NO) and yarn images by Eduardo Terrazas (b.1936, MX)
The artists share common interests in their art practices, matters such as geometry, colour, form and surface. Furthermore they both work in close relation to architecture, albeit derived from two different starting points. The architectural point of departure in Gjerdevik’s work can be attributed to a theoretical and historical awareness whereas Terrazas has a more explicit relation to architecture, having had a long career as an executive architect. Lastly Terrazas’ yarn images are closely linked to a Mexican arts and crafts culture; likewise Gjerdevik’s ceramic sculptures are embedded in an artisan tradition.
Nils Erik Gjerdevik’s glazed ceramics are at the same time suggestive of narrative and purely abstract. Attempts to relate their visual appearance to recognizable forms, such as an urban landscape or a futuristic vessel, will fail consistently when those thoughts are disturbed by abstractions and irregular forms. They follow no certain logic or method. Contrarily, the compositions of the drawing installation seem much more stringently organized. That being said, the drawings’ immediate impression of being well balanced and ordered is a short-lived interpretation. The frames work as a unifying element while the drawings over and over again strive to escape these boundaries. The controlled is battling the uncontrollable in a perpetual oscillation.
A much more strict mathematical logic is at stake in the works by Eduardo Terrazas. For this show he has created new works from his continuous series: Cosmos, Diagonals and Nine Circles. The three series are all made in the same technique that the indigenous Mexican tripe Huichol has used to produce images for centuries. Coloured yarn is fastened with Campeche wax to a wooden panel in various patterns carefully designed by Terrazas. Each series examines different geometrical ideas and structures and shows a range of possible variations. As in Gjerdevik’s work there is a contradiction or resistance rooted in Terrazas’ yarn images. From a distance these graphic works seem to have a flat surface but on closer inspection they reveal themselves as organic images, rich in tactility and details.
Despite the many similarities in the practices of Nils Erik Gjerdevik and Eduardo Terrazas, their respective works diverge massively. Separated by around 25 years, the two artists work in different traditions. Terrazas is closely connected to socially engaged and political art with works like Organic Growth and Exponential Growth. Gjerdevik’s work functions in a different way, within its own terms while also referring to styles such as art deco, op art and abstract art more broadly.
Working most of his life as an architect, Eduardo Terrazas has established himself as a critically acclaimed artist in the past decade. Shows in important institutions include; 11th Sharjah Biennale, Museo Jumex Foundation, Museo de Arte Carillo Gil, and in the survey exhibition Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980 at MoMA, New York.
Nils Erik Gjerdevik has exhibited broadly within Scandinavia and important shows include: Brandts, Stavanger Art Museum, National Gallery of Denmark, Bergen Art Museum, Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art, Kunstforeningen Gl. Strand and Kunsthal Charlottenborg.