Art Writer from Japan Bites Europe 1 – Horsens, Denmark –
Report / Chisai Fujita (藤田千彩/ Art journalist / writer)
Horsens city is in Denmark. We get the train “ICE” for 4 hours from Hamburg to Horsens. Although it snows on the way, in Horsens, there is no snow or no ice. The name of the city comes from “horse”. We use no buses, walk around the city and the harbor, I feel small size.
Horsens is a Danish city in east Jutland. It is the site of the council of Horsens municipality. The city’s population is 55,884 and the Horsens municipality’s population is 85,662. The municipality is also a part of the East Jutland metropolitan area, which has 1.2 million inhabitants. It is believed the name Horsens derives from the old Danish words hors (horse) and næs (headland). From the 12th century the name Horsenes is known. The earliest traces of a city are remains of a pagan burial site and houses dating back to the 10th century. In the 12th century the kings Sweyn III and Valdemar I issued coins in the city. In the 13th century the city got its own legal code.
Interview: Phuc Van Dang, the conceptual artist
Phuc Van Dang is the conceptual artist and his background graphic designer. His family immigrated from Vietnam in 1980 and lives in Denmark 35 years. He combines art to develop various projects together with his colleagues called “Stormsalen”.
Phuc / “Stormsalen” consists of 5 partners with strong resources that complement each other in professionalism and competences. I am a Conceptual Artist and my colleagues, they are all women, Multimedia Designer, Concept Developement, Textile Designer, Architectural Designer. “Stormsalen” is passionate about creating new and unusual solutions at eye level, in communication, art, culture and design – the intersection, where there are new opportunities and creating future-oriented projects with added value than just economic. “Stormsalen” always works based on user-based processes and a holistic helicopter perspective, where everyone involved is incorporated from beginning to end. We will change, astonish, transform and communicate.
Oh, good members! How do you go on?
Phuc / For “Stormsalen” great design is about people – about need, use or involvement. We investigate and involve user’s needs and experiences from start to finish. The user should be able to experience themselves as co-creator, and thus feel a part of the project.
We make a room for the customer to come up with own stories and experiences from the community, and in this way we will find issues to be resolved. This is the base to create an authentic and genuine project, which is based on the user. The goal for every project is that the end result will, with the user’s help, become alive and engaging.
Through versatile competencies in “Stormsalen”, we are able to think practical and innovative at the same time, so the potential of a project is utilized optimally. The projects are on the way unique and original, localized and not re-producible. The goal is to be able to challenge and surprise the customer and the end-user by breaking up with the expected and predictable. At the same time, we work within a given framework’s conditions, while creating added value by challenging and develops these.
What are you think about the art scene in Horsens?
Phuc / Last year we were able to help the municipality Kordinere Street Art project and be together various artist such to give them a glimpse of the city of Horsens. Apart from that, I also participated in a local street art festival where I had to work together with shops to decorate front of the shop. It is good that art comes without such it creates a dialogue to urban spaces and people. And It is great that Horsens Kunstmuseum is good to invite different artists and different media for example; installation, performance, contemporary art … Sometimes moving the works of art in the city where we have a culture glass house “KUBEN” where people can experience it and join art in the public space. It is important to art culture comes into people. It also creates a dialogue and an experience city space.
What are you doing now?
Phuc / During two years I worked intense with my line and give them their recess and soft form which merge with the Fable universe as I have always worked with. There will be a number of projects and I try to implement with expression in various projects such as along with a ceramic artist, textile artist, designer and opportunity to explore their strengths from painting to product design concept. There are certainly a number of exhibition that I think presenting in different contexts.
Right now, I started to prepare a speech for 40 Art History students which will take place in Horsens. I am excited to tell you what I am doing and how it is to be an artist in Horsens. Apart from that, I have a big project in Copenhagen in May month where I have to work together with a designer to perform a huge work in 30 feet long collage and hand painted art for an underground fence.
Horsens Museum is nice museum. We can see the contemporary art in Horsens and Denmark.
From Journalist Chisai’s eye
Horsens, the city is small and minor city. But it is great that the government thinks about power of culture. And Phuc-san tries it with his colleagues. In Japan, many programs open for gathering people during 10 years, we are boring Biennale and Triennale, art festivals. I hope that Horsens culture projects go on as possible.
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