TAL R :

TAL R :

Shortly before he turned fifty, we had the unique pleasure of spending six months with Danish artist Tal R, while he was in the process of making his grand series of nine enormous railcar-paintings, ‘Habakuk’. Watch the intimate and biographical film.

“There’s one character, in the world of characters, that I like the most, and that character is the colon.” Tal R uses the colon to illustrate the relationship between the past, present and future. In this film, Tal R – on the brink of turning fifty – looks forwards as well as backwards and shares what being an artist and a human being means to him, and why the two can’t be separated.

It’s the pictures that have something capricious within them that truly touches the Danish painter: “If you want an aesthetic discussion about when a picture is fabulous, it’s when something in the picture is an unpredictable movement.” Furthermore, as an artist, you have to be as mystified as the observer: “For instance, if an artist paints a store front, part of the drama is imagining what’s inside the store.”

What happens when something from the outside “breaks” or “besmirches” culture? Tal R feels that this is when progress happens: “Within most contexts it’s a catastrophe if you don’t speak the language, but I think nothing opens up language more than those so-called linguistic catastrophes.”

Tal R (b. 1967) is a Danish painter and former guest professor at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. Born Tal Rosenzweig in Tel Aviv to a Danish mother and Czechoslovakian Jewish father, the family moved to Denmark, where Tal R was raised. The title of the series of paintings featured in the film, ’Habakuk’ (2017), is Tal R and his sister’s nickname for their father. Tal R is widely considered to be one of the main forces in bringing painting back after conceptual art dominated the art scene in the 1990s. His work has been shown internationally, e.g. at ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum in Aarhus, Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich, Contemporary Fine Arts in Berlin, Camden Arts Centre in London and Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebæk, Denmark.

Tal R was interviewed by Kasper Bech Dyg and Marc-Christoph Wagner from December 2016 to May 2017.

A film by: Kasper Bech Dyg and Marc-Christoph Wagner
Camera: Klaus Elmer
Additional footage: Nikolaj Jungersen & Rasmus Quistgaard
Edited by: Kasper Bech Dyg & Klaus Elmer
Soundmix: Torsten Larsen
Produced by: Kasper Bech Dyg and Marc-Christoph Wagner
Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2017

Supported by Nordea-fonden

  • Svetlana Alexievich

    A Human is a Scary Creature

    Nobel Prize-winning writer Svetlana Alexievich is known for her monumental non-fiction narratives exploring war and its aftermath in the former Soviet Union. In this video she discusses the role of the writer in a corrupted society permeated by money.

  • Eileen Myles

    A Poem Says 'I Want'

    “I think a poem really is a statement of desire.” Meet the legendary American poet, writer – and homosexual icon – Eileen Myles. In this video, she discusses the innate power of poetry and how to address the absence of the female genitalia.

  • Sambuichi

    One with the Earth's Cycle

    “Architecture should thrive like a plant.” Gain insight into the philosophy of a frontrunner in sustainable architecture, Japanese architect Hiroshi Sambuichi, and hear how he created some of his unique, site-specific buildings.

  • Naja Marie Aidt

    What You Don't Want to Hear

    “Life’s fragility is ever-present.” Deeply moving video with Danish writer Naja Marie Aidt, who opens up about the tragic death of her 25-year-old son, and how she dealt with her overshadowing loss and grief through literature, gradually returning to writing.

  • George Condo

    The Way I Think

    George Condo was part of the 1980s wild art scene in New York. In this video, recorded in his New York-studio, the iconic artist shares his life-long love of drawing and thoughts on his artistic expression, which he describes as “artificial realism.”

  • Joyce Pensato

    A Life with Cartoon Characters

    Meet the unique artist Joyce Pensato, who paints funny yet sinister large-scale versions of cartoon figures and comic book heroes. We visited the Brooklynite in her studio where she showed us around and shared her love for the iconic characters.

  • Paul Auster

    What Could Have Been

    “I don’t think there’s a human being alive who doesn’t reflect on what could have been.” Watch the great American novelist Paul Auster on the impact of the choices we make, the obsessive nature of writing and having reached the age of 70.

  • Bunny Rogers

    Mourning Youth

    Watch the praised artist Bunny Rogers (b. 1990) talk about creating autobiographical work that draws from memory and deals with her childhood by archiving her feelings from that time: “You can’t make objective art, it’s going to be subjective.”

  • Ed Atkins

    Something is Missing

    Ed Atkins is considered one of the most unsettling contemporary artists – as well as one of the most exciting. In this video, the young British artist shares how he works from written texts, and why melancholy is at the centre of his animated digital videos.

  • Louisa Gagliardi

    Longing for Something Else

    “Art is amazing because it’s in a way unnecessary, but extremely necessary as a testimony of its time.” Let us introduce you to a rising star of painting, Louisa Gagliardi, who creates her surreal work digitally and adds layers of paint to the printed image.

  • Hannah Levy

    A Design Purgatory

    “I wonder if the reason why people want to touch it is that they’re in some way attracted to it, or if they’re repulsed by it.” Meet the young artist Hannah Levy, who primarily makes sculptures combining curving steel forms with cast silicone.

  • Dora Budor

    Acting Things

    “I want to use art as a field where I can explore parallel scenarios.” Dora Budor makes complex sculptures and interactive installations inspired by cinematic metaverse and scientific research. Join us as we visit the young Croatian artist in her studio.