In Stangerup’s drawings assemblages of ancient African and Mexican fertility sculptures and Japanese netsuke figures are confronted with iconic artworks and lesser known studies by among others Hans Bellmer, Jean Michel Basquiat, Alexander Calder, Otto Dix, Disney, Jean Dubuffet, Georg Grosz, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Pablo Picasso, Gerhard Richter, and Egon Schiele.
In Stangerup’s ongoing experimentation with finding a state of balance – an equilibrium between often radically different drawing techniques and motifs – works from the history of art become participants in a play of associations, a jeu de motifs, and are recreated in new, original yet derivative works. In his own distinctive way Stangerup establishes and investigates possible connections between the artworks beyond time and place, and in places the encounter seems violent, at other times slightly comical. The juxtapositions take you by surprise and the result becomes a kind of drawn ready-mades, with nods to the contemporary as well as the 20th-century avant-garde and earlier epochs of art history.
The avant-garde’s use of cut-up and collage seems to be a clear inspiration. But rather than cutting reproductions from magazine and books, Stangerup re-creates the existing material in charcoal, pastel and wax pastel on paper, which is his preferred medium. This means that drawn copies appear in assemblages that are supremely Stangerup’s own. The process results in a kind of appreciative mastery of the models, which have almost literally passed through his body and mind to find a place in his works.