Five questions to Heidi Stibæk Kaiser

Five questions to Heidi Stibæk Kaiser

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Heidi Stibæk Kaiser, born in 1964, is a Copenhagen-based contemporary artist. Her artwork is about color, composition, structure, materiality and in her abstract expressionist paintings, there's an uninhibited space for free expression within an ongoing experimental journey.

She studied Architecture at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art and Painting at the Spektrum School of Art. Currently, she resides and works both in Copenhagen and Tisvildeleje in northern Zealand. She is also a co-founder of GANG galleri, an artist-run gallery with 11 associated studios.

How did you get into art?

From a young age, I engaged in painting, sketching, and ceramics. Later on, alongside my studies in architecture, I took courses in art. During my years as an architect, I had little time left to paint, so I was very excited when I decided to fully dedicate myself to my art in 2015. Spektum School of Art and tutorials by other artists, was an encouraging step into the art world and into a wide network of artists.



How would you describe your style? What makes your work special?

I would describe myself primarily as an abstract expressionist artist although I would also claim to be non-objective. The object is the painting itself. My focus lies heavily on gesture, color, composition, material and layers.

In the beginning of my artistic journey, I had an appetite on exploring painting techniques, starting out in figurative painting and moving towards the freedom of what could be called a non-objective, expressionistic style.

Experimentation remains central, leading to focused series that investigate specific details, which is sometimes incorporated into my bigger paintings.
My intention is for viewers to sense rather than interpret my art, evoking emotions based on their state of mind.

How do you go about developing your work?

The creation of my work is a blend of spontaneity and experience. Painting a canvas, to me, is both an improvised physical act, but also an awareness to stop the process and consider whether it is the right direction - and possibly come to new realizations.

Shifting between working on either the wall or on the floor with very fluid paint, the drying time can sometimes be overnight, before the next layer can be added. In this process the material itself can change the character of the work and call upon new responses.

I combine calm color surfaces with sometimes fast, powerful brushstrokes, in a loose structure or in a more defined form. I often repaint, using the underlying colors and structures to create a vivid depth in the painting.

Who or what influences you?

Inspiration comes from various sources; film, magazines, nature – every thing that hits the eye. I consume art from museums, galleries, fellow artists and I draw inspiration from the great masters preceding us. A few notable influences include Günther Förg, Cy Twombly, Per Kirkeby, Martha Jungwirth, Robert Motherwell, Franz Kline, Phillip Guston, Antoni Tàpies and Helen Frankenthaler.

Make us curious. What is planned next?

Currently my paintings are opening up towards more loose and energetic brushstrokes, a path I will pursue more in the future development of my art.
Two solo exhibitions are upcoming; one in our artist-driven gallery and the other in connection with a Culture Night event in a gallery north of Copenhagen.