Birgit Hessellund

 Hardy Brix draws his immense landscapes from more remote regions. He goes to geographic extremes, and records his impressions from the end of the world, where high skies meet sea and land, without minor disturbances such as humans and their interference with nature. Here we see unspoilt scenery where man is but a speck of dust that easily disappears with a puff of air. Here, on the edge of the world things are put in the right perspective, and nature has its monumental way. The canvas is a memory image, painted in peaceful Denmark, but crystallized by impressions from previous study tours to Svalbard, Greenland and Antarctica.

The Arctic landscape is shaped by a choice of cool colours applied in thin layers with a spatula. Because Hardy Brix works with such fluid oils he has had more than once - to put the canvas into a horizontal position, on the floor, to be able to control the colours. It requires patient work, the depth of the picture being achieved not by means of a linear perspective, but by means of many thin layers of colour glazes.

Although the picture is developed on the basis of the colour scheme of previous works, Hardy Brix works without sketches, but in constant dialogue with the picture itself-where does it want to go? It is a slow process that may demand serious intervention even when the picture finally seems to be taking shape. But it may be necessary to preserve the energy of the picture.

Birgit Hessellund, May 2003


Oli on canvas. 65x60 cm.

Oli on canvas. 65x60 cm.


Hardy Brix writes about himself

My extensive travels to the most remote, most deserted, coldest regions of our planet have left deep imprints on my paintings. Greenland, Svalbard and Antarctica are frequent titles of my paintings in recent years, not so much as topographical sites, but more as a recollection. This painting I have called "Arctic Landscape, the quintessence of impressions from my travels. A polar landscape of gigantic proportions where common sense and everyday concepts lose all meaning and man is reminded of his inadequacy. The weather is unpredictable in these parts, ranging from freezing cold to snow and sleet, to all-consuming light, whiter than white, where green is not green and blue is not blue-but light.
My method is simple; I work without sketches or other aids, and put on the initial thin layers of paint with a spatula, a bit carelessly-a couple of colour clashes in the middle of many haphazard shots. It has all been set in motion and will gradually become integrated in the painting. I meet gradually more resistance in the painting process, and, as I reach a point of despair, I look at my palette thinking that somewhere in it is the colour that means redemption. The transitions between the elements of nature-the sky, the mountains, the glaciers, the sea, the ice -are all treated as recollections of feelings, of weather, solitude, despair and isolation, all coming together as the painterly code on the surface of the painting.

Hardy Brix

Oli on canvas. 65x60 cm.