HELENE GULAKER HANSEN -UNCOMPROMISED

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ALONG THE CHANTILLY-CREAMED OVERGROUND OF A NEW CHAMPAGNE AVENUE, RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE SCANDALOUS OPPORTUNITY OF A GREAT RESHAPE OF TODAY’S OSLO LANDSCAPE, CURIOUSLY AND ENTHUSIASTICALLY SOMEONE IS SETTING UP THE SHIMMERING LIGHTROOM IN THE CITY’S NEW PATH OF FINE ARTISTRY – THE SHOOT GALLERY ITSELF, MOVED DIRECTLY INTO THE EMERGING ART DISTRICT, IN THE WOMB OF BARCODE.

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THERE IS WIDESPREAD CRITICISM AROUND THE HEIGHTS AND DESIGNS OF THE BARCODE BUILDINGS, ALL BY US- CONFIDENT, PICKY AND EASY-TO-JUDGE CITIZENS OF OSLO.  

 

IT IS INTERESTING THAT THE BARCODE HAS BEEN CRITICISED AS THE BARRIER BETWEEN THE FJORD AND THE REST OF THE CITY. THERE ARE SOME HARD TALKS GOING ON ABOUT THIS SO-CALLED MONEY-AREA: WHETHER IT IS MAKING TROUBLE OR DESTROYING OSLO’S CHARACTER AS AN OPEN PLACE. AND SOME MEANS IT OBSTRUCTS THE CITY FOR THE BENEFIT OF A RICH FEW…

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ACTUALLY, TALKING BARRIERS OR WALLS, NOT EVEN THE TRUMP’S, NOT THE EX-ONE IN BERLIN, MORE SURPRISINGLY, THERE IS HIDING ANOTHER ONE, THE WALL OF A REAL TROUBLE… THERE IS EVIDENTLY MORE VIOLENT BARRIERS BETWEEN THE WORLD AND THE FEW OFFICIALS WHO ARE APPARENTLY NOT READY FOR INTERNATIONAL REALITIES?

 

THE PRETTY NEGLECTED WALL IS STRATEGICALLY BLOCKING AND LITERALLY LOWERING THE LOCAL CREATIVE AREAS. IT IS BIZARRELY OVERTAKEN BY BASIC OR RATHER PRIMITIVE VALUES. IT IS UNDERCOVERED BY A ROMANTIC TALE OF THE NATURAL ESTHETICS WHAT RISES BEAUTIFULLY AS A SOLID MOUNTAIN ALONG EDEN MIRAGES RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF OSLO’S OWN PLAYGROUND.

 

ALL BUT THE GREAT MENTAL WALL MAINTAINED BY A SMALL AND INSECURE CREW OF THE FOODIES? WHO’S CASTING A PERMANENT SHADOW ON REAL “NEIGHBOURHOODS” AND “COLLECTIVES”? THE PARADOX IS; ALL IS MADE, NOT MOSTLY FOR THE ALREADY CELEBRATED FEW RICH, BUT FOR THE QUASI-HEDONISTIC MIDDLE-CLASS. A GREAT MAJORITY WHO ARE WORKING THEIR DEBTS ALL THEIR LIVES: EVERYTHING BUT THE SELF-REALISATION.

 

HOWEVER, LUCKILY ENOUGH, THERE ARE SOME HEROES… WHO WILL NOT COMPROMISE, BANG-BANG!

 

HELENE IS ONE OF THEM WHO CONNECTS AND ENTRANCING THE GREAT OUTSIDE WORLD- RIGHT THROUGH THE FAMOUS BARRIER, STRAIGHT TO THE EMPOWERING OSLO`S OWN INSIDE POTENTIALS.

 

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 A NEW #DT500SUPERSTAR

 

HELENE GULAKER HANSEN

SITTING IN #DT500REDSOFA AND BIGGING UP THE  #DT50015MINOFFAME CONTEXT

 

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Shoot Gallery is the first private gallery in Oslo dedicated to Fine Art Photography, launched in 2013. They have ambitions to present the best of Norwegian Fine Art Photography in combination with International artists. The last time we met Helene was at the Literature Saloon at Kristin Dahle`s Baker Hansen Schultzgate 1. : a quite untraditional but cute event, at the traditionally looking, but currently swinging Oslo spot.

 

Today we came to Helene`s new space in Barcode. We are drawn in by her new sliding doors. It looks like the gallery has got enough meters now for a classic-sized wall horizon, where the magic of fine art photography appears. 

Helene Gulaker Hansen has a Master of Science in International Marketing and a Bachelor of Arts from St. Martins London, she has worked with fine art photography since 2010. 

 

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DT 500 MAG:  – What is the difference between a curator/ gallerist compared to other more standard professions like a lawyer, economist, politician etc..

 

HELENE: – I believe the facts side are the same; like the importance of education, knowledge, training and a deep understanding of the industry.

 

“The difference might be the importance of trusting and respecting my emotional reactions to connect with the artwork and the clients.”

 

 

DT 500 MAG: – There is a quite annoying emotion of jealousy, the emotion of unconscious rivalry or maybe the underdeveloped feeling of competition. You, as one of most progressive gallerists in Norway, who is your competitor or which gallery are you white jealous about or even admire?

HELENE: – Anyone having the pleasure working with the works of Francesca Woodman…

 

Francesca Woodman was an American photographer known for her black-and-white self-portraits. Despite her short career, which ended with her suicide at the age of 22 on January 19, 1981, in New York. Woodman produced over 800 untitled prints during her life. Influenced by Conceptualism and often featuring recurring symbolic motifs such as birds, mirrors, and skulls, Woodman’s work is often compared to Surrealists such as Hans Bellmer and Man Ray. On her frequent use of herself as a model, she observed:

 

 

“It’s a matter of convenience—I’m always available.”

 

Though Francesca Woodman had few opportunities to show work during her life… Woodman has been the subject of numerous posthumous solo exhibitions, including at the Museum of Modern Art San Francisco, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Fondation Cartier, among others. 

 

 

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DT 500 MAG: – What makes a gallery good?

HELENE: – Great art. But then all gallerists know putting great art on the wall is the easy part of running a gallery. It is of main importance the gallery is easy to enter whether you are a part of the art crowd or a first time visitor. 

 

 

” Tate Modern mounted sliding doors to minimise the resistance to entering. Sliding doors is a good metaphor. Ease and invite people in.”

 

 

DT 500 MAG: – What do you think other gallerists can envy you in your Shoot Gallery concept?

 

HELENE: –  Curated exhibitions in combination with a market section. 

 

 

” The concepts is inviting people to experience a high number of artworks in one place.”

 

 

With the decision of moving from Parkveien to Barcode, Helene also has provoked an interest of the company Snøhetta, the architects who build the Norwegian Opera house. They have also helped to complete the new concept of the Shoot Gallery. Also, the Barcode developers have actually ambitious plans for this area. There are 10,000 people already working in the Barcode area, today. How many of them have an interest in fine art photography and who of them will become the audience of the Shoot Gallery? Helene has the challenge to get decent art lovers to discover the new scene. 

 

DT 500 MAG: – It was the inauguration of a new grand opening of Shoot Gallery in a new location at Barcode, why did you move here?

HELENE: – Barcode is the new arts centre in Oslo.

 

 

” Together with Kunsthall Oslo and Munch Museet in motion, we have an exhibition programme attracting a highly varied and broad art crowd to this area. And a bit further down the road the Munch Museum and main Library together with the Opera House, all that will form a rare and powerful centre for the arts. I believe other galleries will follow soon too.”

 

 

There is a Projekgalleriet just around the corner beside the Shoot Gallery, they run project named Munch Museum in motion in collaboration with Art Hall Oslo. They are organising and curating exhibitions based on the artwork from Stenersen Collection. The project Munch Museum in motion shall hold 12 exhibitions before the opening of the Munch Museum in 2020, it will be both group exhibitions and solo exhibitions.

 

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DT 500 MAG: –  What was your opening repertoire?

 

HELENE: – Our Norwegian masters Dag Alveng, Tom Sandberg, Per Maning together with the French master of Ambrotypes, Èric Antoine. We are also presenting video works by Anne Katrine Senstad.

 

DT 500 MAG: – How do you choose what is fine art or not in the photographic arena?

HELENE: – Hard to say in a few words, instead I will mention:

 

” the importance of working with artists who are fully dedicated to the arts. Full-time. “

 

DT 500 MAG: – Which personal characteristics of yours make you innovative? 

 

HELENE: –

 

” To state how our finest Norwegian Artist are on the same level as our finest international artists. They deserve the international brand “Norwegian Photography. “

 

 

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DT 500 MAG: – Helene, let’s imagine some drama, all the national galleries and museums in the world are on fire, which single art piece would you choose to save? Why?

 

HELENE: –

 

 ” Per Maning, Oscar, large format analogue print. Pure Magic.”

 

Fine artist Per Maning is focused on the digital mediums of photography and video. The reoccurring themes in his works are the relations between human and nature, with a focus on the biological and psychological similarities that forms a bond between humans and other species. In 1988, Maning patiently portrayed a group of seals in aquariums, which are toned black and white photographs represented Norway in the Venice Biennale in 1995.  “Oscar ” the seal is one picture from this series.

 

 

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DT 500 MAG: – What was the last unforgettable impression you have been experiencing by photography or any other kind of fine art?

 

HELENE: – Eric Antoine’s wet collodion glass plates.

 

” We aim to combine Norwegian art photographer with international manners. We are also committed to contribution of highlighting Norwegian artists abroad and are very pleased that senior advisor Therese Aalberg Foreign Affairs was opening the exhibition ”

 

DT 500 MAG: – You have growing daughters, do you cultivate creativity in them? Why is it important?

 

HELENE: – My daughters are used to coming with me to art events as a natural part of our lives. For the joy of it.

 

 ” Joy is important.”

 

DT 500 MAG: – Helene,  nice meeting you again. Never compromise for all art falls. RAPTURE!

 

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Talk  by Arthur Sopin
Photography  by Andreas Roed