Artist of the Month : Annette Kierulf

Aug 3, 2020

Annette Kierulf (1964) works with drawing, woodcuts, artist books, installation and sculpture, and has been a member of Tegnerforbundet since 2017. Kierulf's drawings are characterized by a direct and recognizable design language, which has clear parallels to her woodcut work. The motifs are simplified to abstract surfaces in strong hues that are equated on the image surface. Kierulf involves the substrate, whether it is a wooden board or a black sheet, actively in his motifs, to modulate shapes and surface structures, giving the images their distinctive atmosphere and character. This, as well as the clear visual expression in the drawings, means that the works immediately appeal to the viewer. Annette Kierulf lives and works in Bøvågen and Bergen. More information about Annette Kierulf her .

TF: Annette, can you tell us a little about your artistic work?

AK: I often work with several media in parallel, woodcuts, drawing, sculpture and artist books. I like the routine that lies in going to the studio and working with the same materials, e.g. woodcuts or crayons, but at the same time constantly creating new rules for the work, which makes me see new possibilities. The new can be as simple as changing from white to black paper, picking colors in the blind that I have to limit myself to, writing a poem in Nynorsk or something else I have not done before. At the same time, I have to set aside time to work more structured towards a deadline, an exhibition.


TF: How do you use drawing in your work? Tell us a little about your work process!

AK: It all starts with drawing. I draw to plan, to remember an idea I get, and to be able to see better. I have been drawing for as long as I can remember and I was quite young when I decided to become an artist or researcher. I enjoyed drawing fantasy stories, but also studying things in nature and drawing birds, animal tracks and skeletons, plants and mushrooms. I also drew fact booklets about runes, constellations or symbols and patterns taken from books about the world's different cultures. I still have many of the same interests, but now I call the method "mimetic analysis", and it is part of several art projects I have done.

I also continue to work with drawing in a more expressive and intuitive way, where the mood-bearing properties of the colors are important, but where I try to think and control as little as possible. In this instinctive process, fragments of art I have seen through the ages are channeled out and I am fascinated by discovering what emerges, a little Edvard Hopper here, a little Emily Carr there, a little Nikolai Astrup or Georgia O´Keefe.


TF: What inspires you? Do you work from a theme?

AK: There is an enormous amount that inspires me, visual arts, literature and old craft traditions in embroidery, weaving, scraping and wood carving, often from Nordhordland where I live. I am particularly interested in artists who have a wide range of expressions and media, who ignore the distinction between applied art and fine art, and who are just as happy to make lampshades as painting. Examples of these are Sophie Tauber-Arp, Sonia Delaunay and Natalia Goncharova.


TF: What are you currently working on?

AK: I have a project called The Feminist School of Printmaking and everything that interests me fits in this school. These include research into feminist art theory and the lives and works of female artists. I read for a couple of hours every morning before I then work practically with my own works for upcoming exhibitions at gallery Briskeby, Haugesund Kunstforening and at KODE. The KODE project is the most comprehensive, so that's what I spend the most time on.


TF: What does drawing (drawing) mean for you / your work?

AK: As mentioned, drawing is very basic. There is an interesting connection between drawing and memory. I do not remember much from the first day of school, but I remember how it felt to draw myself, which was a task we were given. From around the same time I remember how I drew my first wristwatch which I thought was beautiful, with a blue strap with white hearts on it.

I got a kick in the 80's of Betty Edward's book Drawing is to See , with contour drawing, space drawing, upside down drawing and memory drawing. In recent years, Annie Dillard's essay Seeing has been particularly inspiring.


TF: Tell us a little about your work in Tegnerforbundet's sales department!

AK: The drawings in the sales department are from the series Night Studies . I started drawing this series one night I could not sleep. The sleepless nights lasted for a long time. When I realized that I was not going to sleep, I got up to read or make small drawings. I drew what I had lying on the table, the books I was reading or the view from the windows. Sitting up at night and looking out the window has its own melancholy, the occasional car passes, a shrunken soul passes by.

To sleep better, I went for long walks, drawing houses and landscapes I had seen that night. The insomnia and fatigue made me see everything around me in a kind of melancholy shadow light. The houses depicted in the drawings are typical Norwegian village houses. But instead of emphasizing the idyllic and safe, associated with living in the countryside, these houses also give a feeling of abandonment - there are few signs of human presence and activity. I am interested in this duality; the landscape and architecture are familiar and yet strange at the same time, with a touch of horror.


See available works by Annette Kierulf in the online store .