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Norway Museum of Contemporary Art Opens Snorre Ytterstad SQUARED TARGET

The Norway Museum of Contemporary Art Presents Snorre Ytterstad. SQUARED TARGET on view 24 June–18 September 2011.

Snorre Ytterstad’s work often starts off with something inconspicuous from everyday life, like a piece of reinforcement rod from the back yard, a pen, a drawing pin or a coin. By placing these familiar objects in unusual contexts, where they are alienated from their intended functions, they emerge in a new light, producing whole new chains of associations. The exhibition is one of a series showing key Norwegian contemporary artists at the Museum of Contemporary Art. The latest in this series was an exhibition of Marte Aas’ films and photographs.

The exhibition gives a comprehensive overview of Ytterstad’s work from 2000 onwards, and some entirely new works which have not been shown before. Ytterstad is fascinated by the range of meanings that language and words can take on depending on their context. Thus his titles often function on several levels opening up multiple readings. The works on view possess a compelling complexity in both form and content, often with a humorous twist, and clearly formed by an in-depth knowledge of materials. A relationship with Duchamp’s readymades and the ‘recycling’ of well-known works from art history, such as Alexander Calder’s mobiles and the paintings of Kasimir Malevich, are notable starting points for some of Ytterstad’s more recent works while his practice can also be seen in association with major Norwegian artists like Jon Gundersen and Børre Larsen.

The artist dissembles everyday objects and forms them into something new. It may be a ball-point pen which he transforms into a telescope and a rocket, or a studio writing table, reduced in size. Ytterstad has a remarkable way of entwining different themes together. Space, time, and circles are recurring themes and elements in his work. Ytterstad modifies the actual physical space which his work takes possession of, while on the other hand his notion of space and use of circular elements may also allude to time, eternity, or even directly to the launch of spacecraft, planets and outer space. In addition, his work may have political undertones, and can be interpreted as criticism of society, ‘the system’ or institutions. He makes use of emblematic objects such as a Norwegian one-krone coin, or the Swiss army knife to put his message across.

The exhibition is curated by Randi Godø.

Snorre Ytterstad was born in 1969 in Bodø and lives and works in Oslo. He studied at the Kabelvåg School of Art (1990–92), the National Academy of Fine Arts, Bergen (1992-95) and the National Academy of Fine Arts, Oslo (1995–96). He has had a number of individual exhibitions in Norway and Scandinavia at Galleri Erik Steen, Oslo; Landings Project Space, Vestfossen; Galleri F-15, Moss; Galleri 54, Gothenburg and Galleri Kari Kenetti, Helsinki. Ytterstad has also been part of several group exhibitions, amongst others at the National Museum of Art, Oslo; UKS Biennale, Oslo; Henie Onstad Art Center, Høvikodden; Buro Empty, Amsterdam; Pollock Fine Art, London and Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo.

Also on view at the Museum of Contemporary Art:

Absolute Installation including major works by George Adéagbo, assume vivid astro focus, Per Barclay, Louise Bourgeois, Silvie and Shérif Defraoui, A K Dolven, Jon Gundersen, Else Marie Hagen, Marianne Heske, Olav Christopher Jenssen, Ilya Kabakov, Anish Kapoor, William Kentridge, Per Maning, Bjarne Melgaard, Suvi Nieminen, Maria Serebriakova and Bill Viola.

Image: Snorre Ytterstad, “Squared Target,” 2010. Photo: Snorre Ytterstad

Norway Museum of Contemporary Art
Bankplassen 4, Oslo

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