1959 · Denmark
Hjördis Haack in private collections
Historical Context of Denmark
As the southernmost of the Scandinavian countries, Denmark has often been very influenced by the Germanic culture of Northern Europe, that borders its southern frontiers. This responsiveness is often combined with the Nordic attributes of restraint and melancholy in its arts. At the end of the nineteenth century, and in the earlier part of the twentieth, Denmark produced an extremely important painter of Post-Impressionism, Vilhelm Hammershøi. Acclaimed for his wistful and extremely scarce interiors, Hammershøi's reputation was founded on his ethereal depictions of light and shadow in modest, dignified interiors, most often his own residence. In the later twentieth century, Denmark was a major country in the CoBrA movement of Expressionist painting, where the naming convention was derived from the cities of the founding members - the Co standing for Copenhagen on behalf of Danish artist Asger Jorn. Established in 1949, CoBrA's vivid colours and vibrant childlike figures became both a scandal and sensation. Other critically acclaimed modern and Danish artists include Per Kirkeby, Olafur Eliasson, Danh Vō, Sergej Jensen and Tal R.
Further Biographical Context for Hjördis Haack
Hjördis Haack was born in 1959 and was largely influenced creatively by the 1970s. The 1970s were a period of consolidation and progress in the arts, most often characterised as a response to the dominant strains of the preceding decade. Conceptual art emerged as a influential movement, and was in part an evolution of and response to minimalism. Land Art took the artwork into the extensive outdoors, taking creative production away from commodities and engaging with the earliest ideas of environmentalism. Process art combined elements of conceptualism with other formal considerations, creating cryptic and experimental bodies of work. Expressive figurative painting began to regain importance for the first time since the decline of Abstract Expressionism twenty years prior, especially in Germany where Gerhard Richter, Anselm Kiefer, Georg Baselitz became highly respected figures worldwide. A number of the artists who gained fame and successful in the 1960s remained dominant figures. For example, Andy Warhol branched out into film and magazine publishing, the first kind of cross cultural activity for a visual artist. This secured his reputation as a major international celebrity in his own right. International movements gained popularity included feminism, which translated strongly into the visual culture, and photorealism which had begun in the 1960s and enjoyed momentous commercial and critical achievements. For the first time painters and sculptors from Latin America were embraced by the dominant critical and institutional levers in New York.