Trond Bakken

Press release

Drammens Museum invites the press to a press conference in the Lyche pavilion at Marienlyst for a retrospective exhibition of Trond Bakken's paintings and works on paper. Trond Bakken (b. 1934) started with watercolors and has slowly but surely switched to working with oil and acrylic. He works in a moderate, modern form that has sprung from French painting in the first half of the 20th century. Both the choice of motif, mood and way of painting are intimate. All the pictures are figurative, but the picture space is modern. This means that he to a small extent uses a strong central perspective and to an even lesser extent uses light and shadow modeling. This can be seen in the pictures' beautiful use of colors. Instead of adding black, gray and dark brown to the shadow areas, he uses alternating cold and warm colors. The result is that the picture space becomes relatively flat and shallow, but without the figures appearing as cut-out silhouettes. The images are modern also in that his pulsating brushwork is visible. There is no doubt that these are painted pictures and that we have to go the way of brushstrokes and pigment to experience portraits, figure groups and landscape spaces. Trond Bakken manages to balance the two demands the painting always makes: it must be both a picture of something (the motif or the content) and it must be something that is painted and that relates to the painting's own tradition (the formal or stylistic).

The latter is important, because something does not become good art without it being a satisfactory form. The image must appear formally redeemed; the tensions in space and color must be balanced. Works of art are especially good if this formal redemption takes place in the same tone as the motivic. And it happens in the best pictures of Trond Bakken. His themes revolve around the meeting between man (mind and body) and nature (landscape), and between individual and society, man and woman. In these conditions, conflicts, alienation, loneliness and melancholy can occur. It is these vulnerable positions that Bakken processes with great empathy. He shows how melancholy and loneliness can be remedied by showing the need for support. He finds this support in the dog, in the strong horse, in the woman, in love and in family life. He finds peace by exposing the individual to large and open landscape spaces. The wealth of emotions that such an artist experiences in his experience of the world and society is given pictorial expression by means of moods from the changing lighting of the day and soft color changes that occur in the afternoon heat on a late summer day in Holmsbu. Trond Bakken is a significant colorist and his color vision is not only formally controlled, it is also something that one feels springs from his hypersensitivity in relation to moods and moods.

The exhibition shows highlights from Bakken's entire career so far, and it contains many early images that most people have not seen before. At the exhibition, one can follow his development from dark and gnarled images from the early 1960s, over juicy and powerful figure compositions in the 1970s to the open and colorful images from later years.
The curator of the exhibition is Åsmund Thorkildsen, who has also written the catalog's essay «On
overgrown paths to find their own way. "

The press is invited to see the exhibition on Thursday 26 August at 11.00 in the Lyche pavilion.
The artist will be present.

For further information, please contact:
Åsmund Thorkildsen, tel. 32 20 09 31/97 50 04 45