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Poul Gernes at Louisiana


H O N O R A R Y   G R A N T S

It is with great pride that we hereby announce that on March 19 of this year, which would have been the painter, Professor Poul Gernes’s 90th birthday, the Gernes Fonden (Klara Karolines Fond), will be awarding four honorary grants to internationally active artists and art mediators who share Poul Gernes’s conviction that the aesthetic is always closely linked to the ethical.

What is common to this year’s four grant recipients is that they are making use of art to demonstrate a sense of solidarity with the weakest in society, through creative exertion and social comittment. By taking art out of the art-institution and placing it in the middle of life—right where it belongs!—these individuals make a concrete difference in the world. This was also Poul Gernes’s ambition, with his many site-specific works that still today enrich hospitals, schools, institutions and factories all over Denmark.


”Art is never an end or a goal, but always only a beginning.

Ai Weiwei is an internationally renowned Chinese artist whose artistic practice has been posing such a challenge to the Chinese authorities that he is now being forced to live under house arrest: his name cannot even be so much as mentioned in Chinese media and he cannot exhibit his works in his homeland.

What has led to such drastic consequences? Ai Weiwei himself says that “any way that you are working reflects moral, aesthetic and philosophical values ??... it's not only about forms but also about social behavior, about culture as human conduct.”

The 100 million individually hand-painted Sunflower Seeds of porcelain that Ai Weiwei showed at a solo exhibition of his work at the Tate Modern in London in 2010 were manufactured in the “Porcelain Capital”, Jingdezhen, in China. Some 1,600 people worked for more than two years on hand-painting the seeds for the show—a unique synthesis of a long tradition of historical craftsmanship and a barrier-breaking contemporary art work.

The installation, Remembering, consisted of 9,000 children’s knapsacks, which created an installation of 1000 m2 that was mounted on the façade of Haus der Kunst in Munich in order to pay respects to the many children who lost their lives in the earthquake in the Sichuan province in 2008, and to draw attention to the fact that the schools in the area were so poorly constructed.

For the work, Fairytale, at Documenta 12, in 2007, Ai Weiwei invited 1,001 “ordinary” Chinese people to spend a week in Kassel in Germany. Many of the participants had never previously traveled outside China. Advance preparations for this “work” included, among other things, getting passports for the participants. This generous gesture took on a special degree of gravity in light of the fact that only a few years later, the Chinese authorities, without offering any explanation, detained Ai Weiwei's own passport.

On the very same day that the honorary grants are being awarded (March 19), an exhibition of Ai Weiwei's works will be opening at Faurschou Foundation in Copenhagen.




 Interviewer: ”What do you think about people selling the art you put on the street?”
Banksy: ”As a kid I always dreamt of growing up to be a character in Robin Hood.
I just never realised I'd end up playing one of the gold coins.” 

Banksy, the supposedly British, anonymous, albeit world-famous graffiti artist, has—with great poetry, humor and aesthetic precision—renewed grafitti art on a global scale. With aesthetics as his weapon, Banksy manages to portray injustice and to cast light on the abuse of power. Banksy has attained a controversial worldwide fame that offers the weak in society a helping hand in the form of publicly displayed protest pictures that give the powers that be an unpleasant taste in the mouth.

Banksy works under cover of darkness and completely incognito, with simple albeit effective and swift methods: stencils and spray paint. However, he succeeds in placing his works, with studied precision and a high degree of intelligence, into an always surprising and startling interaction with the surrounding environment.

Despite the fact that Banksy’s art has been created for street life, and despite the fact that this is where it belongs, it has also come to be tagged with high prices on the art market.



“… to transform their own neighborhood from a place seen as negative into a place that is able
to communicate its creativity, beauty and innovation to the outside world through art.”

Favela Painting consists of the two Dutch artists, Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn, better known as Haas & Hahn, who have created a number of monumental decoration projects in entire districts and neighborhoods, like the slums of Rio de Janeiro and in the northern part of Philadelphia, one of the poorest areas of the United States. In cooperation with local residents, these two artists have managed to transform slum areas into a visual luxuriousness and to provide identity, a sense of self-esteem and a sense of solidarity to urban areas that have been scarred by poverty and violence. Haas & Hahn are working in Poul Gernes’s spirit, complying with particular site-specific needs and nurturing the convictions that richly glowing colors have a fundamentally positive influence on the human mind and that art has the power to transform reality.



“Art and creative activities are a great part of the treatment
and formation with which we are trying to bring up our children and youngsters.”

Ann Andreasen has managed, with an exceptional degree of warmth and a broad human understanding, to turn the Children’s Home in Uummannaq in Greenland into the place that has made a positive difference in the lives of many young Greenlanders, and especially because music, art, film and culture are natural and integral aspects of life and everyday activity in the children’s home, with the result that nobody can avoid becoming involved, affected, strengthened and inspired by art’s intrinsic power and curiosity about the world—art as a refuge and a sanctuary that one can carry around within oneself.

A countless number of vulnerable children and youth have gained strength and self-esteem here, so as to face the world and adulthood and the Children’s Home in Uummannaq is simultaneously the place from where most of the region’s vibrant cultural activity emanates—and it is situated, to boot, in western Greenland, about 500 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle!



Each one of the four honorary grants is of the order of DKK 25,000,-

With kind regards

The board of directors for Gernes Fonden

(Klara Karolines Fond)
Ulrikka Gernes, Aase Seidler Gernes, Anders Krüger, Jens Erik Sørensen and Vibeke Windeløv





is a major new exhibition exploring ideas, processes, workshops and legacies of three radical art educational models in 1960s Japan, the USA an Denmark.

John Hansard Gallery

Artipelag, Stockholmällning/poul-gernes-sidekick-cosima-von-bonin

Poul Gernes at Toldkammeret in Helsingør


Poul Gernes Retrospective

link to Deichtorhallen in Hamburg

The Ex-school at Museum Jorn in Silkeborg

link to Museum Jorn


Solo exhibition at Galerie Ben Kaufmann, Berlin
7.6.2007 - 31.7.2007
Læs / Se mere ...

documenta 12, Kassel 16.6.2007 - 23.9.2007

Læs / Se mere ...

'All hands on deck'

Group show at Galerie Ben Kaufmann, Munich, 1.6.2007 - 28.7.2007
Læs / Se mere ...

'Fish and Ships'

Group show 19.6.2007 - 26.8.2007 at Kunsthaus Hamburg

Films by and with Poul Gernes

9 films, total 54 min. DVD
In commission at BORGENS FORLAG
Læs / Se mere ...