Odd Nerdrum Biography
Odd Nerdrum was born on 8 April 1944 is a Swedish-born, Norwegian figurative painter whose work is held by museums worldwide. Themes and style in Nerdrum’s work reference anecdote and narrative. Primary influences by the painters Rembrandt and Caravaggio help place his work in direct conflict with the abstraction and conceptual art considered acceptable in much of his native Norway.
Nerdrum creates six to eight paintings a year. They include still life paintings of small, everyday objects (like bricks), portraits and self-portraits, and large paintings allegorical and apocalyptic in nature. The subjects of Nerdrum’s paintings are often dressed as if from another time and place.
Nerdrum ws born in Sweden to resistance fighters who had fled German occupied Norway during World War II. At the end of the war Nerdrum returned to Norway with his parents. By 1950 Nerdrum’s parents had divorced leaving the mother to raise Nerdrum and his younger brother. In 1993, Nerdrum discovered his father was not his biological father; his mother had had a relationship with the architect David Sanfed. Nerdrum was born from this liaison.
Nerdrum was educated in a Rudolph Steiner school and later at the Art Academy of Oslo. Disillusioned with the art form taught at the academy and with modern art in general Nerdrum began to teach himself to paint in a post modern style with Rembrandt and Carravagio as influences. In 1965, he began a several-months study with the Swedish painter Joseph Beuys.
Nerdrum says that his art should be understood as kitsch rather than art as such. On Kitsch, a manifesto composed by Nerdrum, describes the distinction he makes between kitsch and art. Nerdrum’s philosophy has spawned The Kitsch Movement among his students and followers, who call themselves kitsch painters rather than artists.
Odd Nerdrum Barn/Children/Kid
He has two daughters and two sons.
Daughters; Nora Ceciliedatter Nerdrum And Oda Broch
Sons; Bork Spildo Nerdrum And Øde Spildo Nerdrum
Odd Nerdrum Family
Odd Nerdrum was born in Sweden in 1944. His parents, Resistance fighters, had been sent to Sweden from German-occupied Norway to direct guerrilla activities from outside the country. A year later, at the end of the war, Odd and his parents moved back to Norway. Lillemor, his mother, soon after went to New York to study at the Fashion Institute of Technology. The feeling of being unwanted and abandoned Nerdrum felt at this time would stay with him until he was in his late forties. In 1950, Nerdrum’s parents divorced, leaving Nerdrum’s mother, Lillemor, to raise two small children, Odd, and his younger brother.
Nerdrum’s father, Johan Nerdrum, later remarried. Although he was supportive of Odd, he kept an emotional distance between himself and his son. At his death, Odd was asked not to attend the funeral. He found out three years later that Johan was not his biological father. Odd, was in fact, the result of a liaison between David Sandved and Lillemor. Lillemor and Sandved had had a relationship prior to Lillemor’s marriage, and this was resumed during the war in a period when Johan was absent. Richard Vine, art critic, describes this episode in Nerdrum’s life as one which created “a conflicted preoccupation with origins and personal identity”, that “came natural to Nerdrum” and was represented in his pictures.
Odd Nerdrum School
Since the 80’s mr. Nerdrum has been running the Nedrum school with varying students in France, Iceland and for the moment; in Norway. In 2013, The Nerdrum School was published by Orpheus publishing. The book shows the school, a variable of older and more recent students’ work, aswell as new paintings by Nerdrum. Studying with Odd Nerdrum is better described as a cost-free workshop or a Renaissance school. Students engage in modelling and preparing canvases, and philosophy is often the daily conversation in the studio.
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Odd Nerdrum Paintings
Nerdrum creates six to eight paintings a year that include: still life paintings of small, everyday objects like bricks, portraits and self-portraits, and large paintings allegorical and apocalyptic in nature. Subjects of Nerdrum’s paintings are often dressed as if from another time and place.
Odd Nerdrum Self Portrait
Odd Nerdrum Dawn
Dawn is a 1989 painting by the Norwegian artist Odd Nerdrum. It depicts four identical men in a grey rocky landscape. The men are seen from the side as they sit on the ground, with scullcaps and leather wrapped around their shoulders, and face the sky above them with closed eyes and open mouths. It is one of Nerdrum’s largest paintings and one he has said he is “very pleased with”.
Dawn was shown at Høstutstillingen in 1989. The rock musician David Bowie bought it at the Raab Gallery in Berlin in the autumn of 1990. According to Dagens Næringsliv, Bowie paid 1.5 million Norwegian kroner for the painting. While visiting Oslo on 22 October 1991 for a performance with Tin Machine, Bowie organised an hour-long meeting with Nerdrum, during which he asked Nerdrum to tell him as much as possible about his worldview and the symbols behind the painting.
Dawn has been reproduced repeatedly in the body of literature on Nerdrum. It was part of the solo exhibitions dedicated to the artist at the Gerald Piltzer Galerie in Paris in 1994 and the Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art in Oslo in 1998.
Following Bowie’s death it was sold at auction on 11 November 2016. Sotheby’s had estimated its value to 60,000—80,000 GBP, but it was sold for 341,000 GBP. This was a new record for a Nerdrum painting, surpassing the record held by The Cloud since 2008. The 2000 American film The Cell, directed by Tarsem Singh, has a scene that is strongly inspired by Dawn. According to Singh, he had seen the painting while visiting Bowie in his home.
Odd Nerdrum Technique
Nerdrum’s approach to painting is based on traditional methods that included mixing and grinding his own pigments, working on canvas he had stretched or stretched by assistants rather than on pre-stretched canvas, and working from live models often himself, and in many cases members of his own family. In 2011, Nerdrum stated that the technique he used in the 1980s was faulty, “a special mixture of oils and paint in an effort to recreate the style of the old masters” which subsequently melted and disintegrated.
Of his process Nerdrum says.” When I paint as if I struggle in the water. I will try with all means not to drown. Sandpaper, rags, my fingers, the knife-in short everything. The brush is rarely used.” Odd Nerdrum prints are based on his paintings. For example, an etching entitled Baby is based on a painting of the same title from 1982. Nerdrum refers to his highly finished, charcoal drawings as “paintings” Often his drawings are large in scale and are works in their own right, as well as being studies for future paintings.