Martin Aagaard Hansen

Caged Flowers

Martin Aagaard Hansen’s artistic point of departure is most often an observation from reality; an encounter with a person or a visual imprint from everyday life —something that has left an impres-sion. In the completed work the original starting point has been shaped, broken down and worked over to become, in the words of the artist, “a far more cryptic and introverted product.” This also applies to Caged Flowers, which was inspired by a walk just outside Holbæk. Here Aagaard Han-

sen met an older woman planting a large, lush flower garden. They got talking and the woman sho-wed the artist around as she unfolded her joy at all the different flowers. To his surprise, she then placed welded metal cages over the flower beds, explaining that she was worried about birds and cats ruining the flowers. In Blegstræde, Aagaard Hansen’s painting explores this paradox of caging something free and alive: One he sees reflected in the containment of people in refugee camps, where life is limited by physical restrictions. The flowers alternate between standing out from the abstract mass surrounding them and integrating into it. The flowers —striving for the sun— in-tertwines with the net of the cage holding the whole motif together and the two seek out one ano-ther in the blue nuances. The restless, wandering lines against the structure of the cage are allo-wed to pulsate in a countermotion, creating an abstract and dynamic landscape.

b. 1988 in Odense, lives and works in Copenhagen.