Sick with Bloom
Often drawing on art historical references, Bak’s paintings contain a temporal complexity establishing the possibility of a new horizon between the past and today. Substantial chromatic backgrounds transforming into vague landscapes inhabited by human figures, animals and natural objects. The interplay between his beings and their environments are deliberately blurred, weaved together by a glow or its opposite, as if to point at the social and psychological contractions of the characters as symbolic gestures. The material processes and layers are pulling the imagery farther away from the source material and into its own reality, where narratives unfold untroubled by a lyricism of the past. Bak’s motifs suggest a take on the romantic, but one that is muted by internalised emotion and expression - a calm dramatics, searching for a point where the figures are equally emerging from and camouflaged by their surroundings, protected and empowered, muted but screaming.
Oliver Bak (b. 1992, Denmark) lives and works in Copenhagen. Recent Solo Exhibitions and group exhibitions: Fragments, ADZ gallery, Lisbon (2021), Degree show, Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts Charlottenborg, Copenhagen (2020), Phantom Folly, Bianca D’Alessandro, Copenhagen (2019), Little soul, Bianca D’Alessandro, Copenhagen (2019), World Bone, Arcway Nightlands Connector, Copenhagen (2019), Sankt Antonios fristelser, Tom Christoffersen, Copenhagen (2019), Ratskeller, Coyote, Stockholm (2019), En plein air, Kunstscenen, Copenhagen (2018), For people who belong somewhere else, Østre Kapel, vestre kirkegård, Copenhagen (2017), Howl all crew, Copenhagen (2017).