Gro Folkan | Norway
Gro Folkan was born in 1949 in Oslo, Norway and she lives between Oslo and Tromsoe. She studied Art at the National Art Academy in Oslo. She has had 29 solo exhibitions of her paintings in leading galleries in Norway and abroad and has also taken part in numerous joint exhibitions. Her works have been purchased by the Norwegian National Gallery, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Oslo, the National Bank of Norway, Art collections , national universities, instititions, and national Offices. Her most resent exhibition was in New York in 2019, and she will exhibit in Milan in 2020, the theme of her recent exhibitions is ’FEMALE RUNES’
’My pictures are instruments, like runes, used for thousand of years by Northern peoples to invoke hidden aspects of reality. The real pictures, the images are not the lines and colours on my canvases, but the images coming into being in the mind of the onlooker’
Technique: I have worked for many years to develop a technique suitable for my purpose. I use metals a lot : gold,silver, brass, copper, aluminum, tin, smoked silver,paladium,platinum. If suitable I treat them chemically for the deeper layers of the artwork to come through and crate new colours. I also use interference colours that change depending on the angle of view. This is difficult to get illustrated in static digital displays.
Contemporary Art Station: Tell us about how you got started. When did you know you wanted to be an artist?
Since I was a small child. I painted on anything available, walls, furniture, to great consternation for my parents !
CAS: What is your process like, from initial idea to the creation of the piece? Do you usually develop the idea for a project before you find the "canvas", or vice versa?
In many ways. I often develop a mental idea, a theme like e.g Female Runes. In the process from there I must be open to what arises. To listen to the images is important, " to see with the ears".
CAS: What do you love most about your creative process?
The concentration, the flow, the intense listening to the images. Through years of work I have excavated a special, personal "space", a pictorial universe where I can move around.
CAS: . What role does art and the artist play in the broader social conversation today?
For most people art is decoration, for me it is more like research. Artwork would be more important - also in the society. - if we learned to listen to our own inner images. That would be a sound counterforce to the strong influence of commercialization in society today.
CAS: Name a few of your favourite artists and influences.
Andrej Tarkovskij (film maker), Francis Bacon, Leonardo da Vinci, Mathew Barney, and more.I admire their force and their serious attitude to art.
CAS: What is the best advice you received as an artist?
Be honest to your calling. There is no other target than yourself, doing so you also connect with other people.
CAS: When did you discover your voice as an artist?
See 1). I had my first public exhibition at 17.
CAS: What advice would you give to emerging artists trying to find their own?
See 6). Be honest! Work hard!