The idea of the city jungle reverberates in the paintings and installations of Ann Sophie Stærk. The artist’s pictorial universe is inspired by her adopted city, New York, and Copenhagen, her hometown. The frenzy of New York City, with its myriad of people and its irresistible vivacity, is a contrast to the tranquil Danish city where nature and design play a part in both urban and home life.
Metropolis is the vibrant city: we are bombarded by its movements, facades, architecture and public spaces. Interiors function, in our passion for design and comfort, as a continuation of the city. However, the home sphere is also the city’s antithesis: an oasis needed to withdraw from the insistent buzz of urban surroundings.
As a flâneur, Stærk explores urban settings and home interiors and these everyday environments are synthesized into dreamy constellations. Stærk liberates well-known objects and spaces from their function. Familiar motives are disturbed, populated and transfigured by magic creatures, people and untamed flora. As viewers, we are sucked into a universe floating in a zone between abstraction and figurative, recognizable forms.
In some works, Stærk retains only a few vague spatial markers from the original subject, transforming fashion storefronts or living rooms into colorful organic landscapes. Streets and interiors become abstract fields of luscious pastels; chandeliers and lamps become exotic vegetation in a transformation of cityscape into fantasy-scape. Fluid lines and flat blocks of color create an almost wistful enchanted cosmos.
Stærk has a widespread universe of work that ranges from paintings, collages, photos and drawings to wall murals.
The viewer is sucked into a universe that flows in a zone between abstraction and the figuration, reality and fiction, city life and nature. In this universe, Stærk allow us to dream and a new story to begin.