‘Fade to Red’ is an exhibition of new work by Danish artist Henrik Godsk. This is the artist’s second exhibition with PIERMARQ* in Sydney.
Godsk’s figurative works depict structured interiors and androgynous characters, aesthetically simplified by the use of geometric forms. Influenced by Scandinavian simplicity and Danish design, Godsk’s paintings adhere to a self-imposed set of rules dictating the use of reduced forms, shapes and colours. In Fade to Red, Godsk adds a new dogmatic rule to this body of work: Each painting must use the colour red. For Godsk, red indicates something bright, alive and mysterious. The artist manipulates the motif of ‘fading to black’ where an image or concept changes gradually until it is completely dark to signify an ending. To Godsk, fading to red veers from the conventions associated with the passage of time, creating work that lives in the present, where there is no before, after or end.
The subject of Godsk’s 15 new works on paper, canvas and wood are figures, still lives and otherworldly animals the artist refers to as “creatures”. The androgyneous characters are reminiscent of art historical portraiture and Russian avant-garde paintings, while at the sametime robotic, referencing the future and technology. Likewise, the still lifes reference organic elements in a vase similar to medieval vanitas paintings, abstracted with ambiguous forms that will never die. Blocks of colour in the background read as windows or paintings on a wall, skewing the perception of depth. Fade to Red depicts figures and objects that live in the past, future and present, belonging to no specific place, time and space.
Godsk's work has been exhibited internationally including in New York, Los Angeles, Berlin, Munich, Barcelona, Stockholm & Copenhagen, and has been cited in prominent public & private collections.