The everyday object is central in the solo show I am here for pleasure but it is no fun by Danish artist Julie Stavad. By either scaling up the size of objects or shaping them in atypical materials Stavad raises the question of whether everyday objects lift us up or weigh us down. Because who actually holds the power – humans or things?
A human-size pin with a mouth-blown glass head has pierced a 1980s leather couch. Next to it, an enormous nylon sock has swallowed a dining table. Meanwhile, two huge, lipstick-like wax sculptures are circled by little pieces of the same material lying as if it was smashed meat on the floor. With hints of drama as well as humor, Stavad’s sculptures are quickly animated, and their mutual relations become a collective but also divided story.
By playing with the proportions and materialities of things, Stavad investigates our bodies’ modes of decoding objects and their surroundings. When we are suddenly faced with a rock-hard shopping bag of natural stone or a gigantic, piercing pin, we are confronted with the intangibility of things and thereby also with the limits and possibilities of human actions.
Julie Stavad (b. 1987, DK) holds an MFA from the Jutland Art Academy (2015) and has previously exhibited at Holstebro Kunstmuseum, Kunsthal NORD, and Aarhus Kunsthal, among other places.
This exhibition is made possible with the support of the Danish Arts Foundation, City of Aarhus, 15. Juni Fonden, Beckett-Fonden, Knud Højgaard's Foundation, Hielmstierne-Rosencroneske Foundation and Aage and Johanne Louis-Hansen's Foundation.