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Åpningstider:
Tirsdag-fredag: 12-17
Lørdag-søndag: 12-16
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Exhibits


Fig Tree Bay Monika Mørck: Fig tree bay Foto: Øystein Thorvaldsen

Monika Mørck
Fig Tree Bay

9. Jun -31. July 2016

The exhibition will be officially opened by the aesthetician and art historian Martin Berner Mathiesen and the art historian Vilde M. Horvei.

We are pleased to welcome you to this year’s summer exhibition Fig Tree Bay by Monika Mørck. The starting point for the show is SOFT Galleri’s location. The gallery is in an area of Oslo characterised durring the daytime by art galleries and businesses, but during the evenings and at night by prostituion and strip clubs. This is the context for Fig Tree Bay.

With peach-coloured and ornamented silk drapery, wallpaper and a dance pole, Mørck seeks to create a room we reccognise from nineteenth-century paintings of harem girls. Art historical references and decorative means are used to illucidate contemporary attitudes to private and public sexuality. The gallery’s front window reveals the exhibition to the outside world, thus allowing it to interfere in the local environment.

In art history, there is a long tradition of presenting the nude female body with drapery and ornamentation. This points to the woman’s role as an object of desire but also to decorative art’s historical status. The dance pole in the middle of the room can be read as symbolising today’s sex culture and popular culture.

The draped textiles and pattern spreading across the gallery walls establish an abstract picture. Symbol representing a socio-critical question are transformed into a seductive pattern. The elements Mørck uses are symbols from Christian and Renaissance art, for instance the fig leaf: a symbol of desire, shame and the act of hiding nakedness. It is combined with icons from popular culture: Marilyn Monroe and the singers Madonna and Rihanna. Mørck also includes a stylised Instagram image of her own body. By combining Christian symbols with popular culture, she wants to say something about how Christian morality largely informs our attitudes to the body and sexuality, how selling one’s body or the use of sexuality in public is stigmatised, and how social media today is used as a forum for moralising, judging and expressing opinions about right and wrong.

Pole dancing offers an example of how sex is present in everyday exercise regimes. Even though most professional pole dancers are not strippers by profession, modern gyms tend to play on erotic connotations when promoting their classes by using expressions like ‘sexy training’. Thus the pole in the exhibition points both to erotic activity in itself and to how sex is present in popular culture.

Monika Mørck (b. 1984) lives and works in Oslo. She holds a Master’s degree (2013) from Oslo National Academy of the Arts. In the summer of 2015 she presented the exhibition Tie Me Up Tie Me Down at TM51 Infill in Oslo. Mørck has participated in several group and collective shows, examples being ++ at Black Box Theatre, Kasbah vandring II at Galleri F 15, and Knock Knock at the Association of Norwegian Sculptors. In 2014 she received a three-year government work grant for young artists. Parallel to her artistic practice, she is part of the design duo MØRCK, along with her mother Marianne Mørck. This fall, Monika Mørck’s art will also be featured in an exhibition marking the 40th anniversary of Trøndelagsutstillingen – a regional exhibition held at Trøndelag Centre for Contemporary Art in Trondheim.

Fig Tree Bay has received support from Oslo Municipality.

Fig Tree Bay

Monika Mørck: Fig tree bay
Foto: Øystein Thorvaldsen

Fig Tree Bay

Monika Mørck: Fig tree bay
Foto: Øystein Thorvaldsen

Fig Tree Bay

Monika Mørck: Fig tree bay
Foto: Øystein Thorvaldsen

Fig Tree Bay

Monika Mørck: Fig tree bay
Foto: Øystein Thorvaldsen

Fig Tree Bay

Monika Mørck: Fig tree bay
Foto: Øystein Thorvaldsen