Belgique and Other Works
D+T Project Gallery is pleased to announce its second solo show of Danish artist Jens Haaning (1965-) who currently lives and works in Copenhagen. Educated, in the artist’s own words, as “an ordinary middle-class sculptor” at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art and the Akademie der Bildende Künste in Munich, Haaning has developed an obsession with the unfamiliar in society and his work has since been considered anything but traditional. Working with a variety of media including installation, performance, pop and poster art, Haaning depicts issues of marginalised social groups and the tensions facing “foreigners” when they try to integrate into alien surroundings. The effect of the work on the viewer is a primary focus for the artist.
In this show, Haaning includes the installation Hamza Rejser (2011), which is part of a permanent intervention in the Pakistani-owned travel agency, Hamza Rejser, in Copenhagen. The interior of the travel agency’s office was replaced by Danish design furniture, evoking Danish nationalism, while the Pakistani items from the office, which could represent marginalisation, formed a travelling installation. By encouraging galleries to place a part of Pakistan into their space, Haaning encourages a study of the foreigner. Another example is Albanian Pigeons (2009), which was carried out during the opening days of the 2nd Thessaloniki biennial of Contemporary Art. Haaning caught around 100 pigeons on the streets of Tirana, Albania, and released them in the square of Thessaloniki in the hope they will become part of Greece’s pigeon population.
In the last couple of years, Haaning has exhibited at the following: Documenta XI; Kassel; the 9th Istanbul Biennial; CAPC Musée d’art contemporain; Migros Museum, Zurich; Museum Ludwig, Cologne; ICA, London; Le Consortium, Dijon; Biennale des Arts, Senegal; De Apple, Amsterdam; Witte de With, Rotterdam; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; the Gwangiu Biennale; Apexart, New York; San Francisco Art Institute; the Institut d’art Contemporain, Villeurhanne; Goodwater Gallery, Toronto; the Wiener Seccession, Vienna; the Liverpool Biennial City States; MOMA PS1 in New York; Nicolai Wallner, Copenhagen; Micheline Szwajcer in Antwerp; the STUK Art center in Leuven and Brussels’ Matrix Art Project.