Ten designers, architects and craftsmen have come together to exhibit their work in a private apartment in Lavendelstræde - a street in a tightly built up area of historic buildings just to the east of the city hall in the centre of Copenhagen.
It is an amazing apartment spread over two upper floors and the attic space of the tall, narrow 18th-century house with a striking mixture of original parts, including the roof structure, but with modern features such as an open metal staircase, a long wall of modern kitchen units and an area of glass floor between the attic bedroom and the kitchen and dining room on the level below.
The kitchen area opens onto a large roof terrace with views over the Copenhagen skyline looking towards the tower of Vor Frue Kirke.
This is not just a chance to see a very striking apartment but, of course, to see the works displayed in a home, in the rooms of the apartment, along with books and furniture and kitchenware of a very real domestic setting.
Perhaps we have created false divisions between craftwork, such as tableware, that we can use in our homes, and the works of artists working in the crafts that we see as gallery pieces. These works, in this exhibition, were not, specifically, designed and made to be contained in an art gallery or museum - although many of these artists have their works in museum collections - but they can and should be seen and appreciated in a home. These pieces stimulate comment, attract admiration, stimulate discussion, stir people to decide if they love, like or even dislike the pieces. Owning and enjoying original art and craft pieces is not exclusively the prerogative of the public gallery or the private wealthy collector but original works of art or of craftsmanship really do have a place enhancing our lives in our homes.
Works shown here range from ceramic multiples through printed cotton squares displayed on a clothes drier on the roof terrace, to a bench in smoked oak supported on upturned stoneware vessels and there are monumental architectural urns in stoneware. Porcelain lights over the main table are a homage to the iconic Danish PH lights and striking jewellery in braided or plaited white plastic beads, forming deep ruffs for the wrist or ankle but set in a framework of a house, reflect the title of the exhibition. The one odd work, and only odd because it was large and set diagonally it fills and dominates the space of the bathroom it is displayed in, is a long narrow glass case with an arrangement of single socks with no pair.
This piece, Finds by Morten Sørensen, illustrates really well one very important role of art which is to point out or isolate something that either we have not thought about or points out an absurdity or a universal experience that we rarely even think about. Other works show how artists experiment with materials and forms pushing boundaries that really should not be there and multiple works are a really good way of emphasising subtle differences or step changes or variations.
toPHøj in porcelain by Anne Tophøj
Indretning in stoneware by Marianne Nielsen and Kristine Tillge Lund
I tid og utid by Anne Tophøj and Theis Lorentzen
Base in oak, aluminium and stoneware by Anne Dorthe Vester and Maria Bruun
Architects, designers and artists taking part include:
Hjemlighed ... an exhibition at Lavendelstræde 8, 1462 København K continues until 15th September.