John Kørner: Apple Bombs
An exhibition of new paintings by the Copenhagen-based artist. Painting, for Kørner, serves the unambiguous, if impalpable, function of exercising the imagination much in the same way as a bicycle stretches out the legs. The artist’s previous work has variously taken the situations of sex workers and Danish soldiers killed in combat in Afghanistan as points of departure, alluding to its topical content with various degrees of abstraction and metaphor; in this exhibition, aspects of contemporary geopolitics including imbalances of wealth and the displacement of populations are obliquely problematised. Rather than predetermined allegorical narratives, the paintings in Apple Bombs present a constellation of seemingly incongruous pictorial elements in which the viewer is caught up, setting in motion dialogues concerning wellbeing, human relationships, consumption and survival.
Subject to the alchemies of representation, recognisable fragments taken from everyday life re-emerge suspended on the two dimensional planes of Kørner’s canvases, occupying an abstracted or ambiguous landscape that seems to vibrate with potential. This open-endedness makes an unstable tool of paint, exceeding conventionally understood boundaries between objects. Architecture Lines and Architecture Dots, two works from 2015, are punctuated by apple shapes that remain only barely within the realm of figuration, seemingly continuously emerging in towers of rhythmic brushstrokes as if performing an impulse towards abstraction. Departing from the objective existence of buildings, architecture is detected as a felt presence in these works: a series of fleeting impressions.