Ole Brodersen | Lyngør, Norway


Short Bio:
Ole Brodersen is a Norwegian art photographer who works with staged landscapes. His most known series “Trespassing” explores encounters between man and nature, and is produced in the island society Lyngør where he grew up as 12th generation. He is strongly affiliated to this place and the maritime elements here dominate his motifs. His father is a sail maker, his grandfather was a sailor and he himself used to row to school.

After a brief international career as an art director, Brodersen circumnavigated the Atlantic Ocean for a year. Upon his return he made a gallery on his home island and later pursued photography through assisting the fine art photographer Dag Alveng (represented at MOMA and Metropolitan).

Brodersen‘s photographs was last shown at the Scandinavia House in New York; his participation supported by the Norwegian Consulate and mentioned by the New Yorker and Harper‘s Magazine. His works has been acquired by private and public collections in Norway, Sweden, Serbia, Malawi, the United Arab Emirates and USA. Brodersen has sojourned in New York, Prague, Belgrade, Stockholm and Porto. He is a member of Norwegian Society of Fine Art Photographers and Norwegian Visual Artist‘s Association.

What is your work about?
The forces of nature are natural phenomena always present in a landscape, beyond human control. Ole Brodersen‘s work is dedicated to unveiling this presence by exploring encounters between manmade objects and untouched nature.
The artist collects various materials such as: Styrofoam, pieces of sailcloth and rope. Most of the material is found while rummaging through his grandfathers shed or his father‘s sail loft. Out of these Ole fashions markers; i.e. floats, flags and kites, sometimes with attached additional sparklers, LED-lights or other light sources. Forces of wind, currents and waves are harnessed and the unfoldings in these encounters are recorded; how nature composes and rearranges these markers. The process involves a large format camera and often long exposures.

Photography reveals the invisible figure of movement in every landscape. Something that is unnoticed, rather than undetectable. A useful analogy is false-color, a technique used in deep space imaging to visualize different unobservable phenomena. Images taken by telescopes are often in wavelengths invisible to the human eye, and needs to be mapped into our perceptual range. We know that these astronomical phenomena aren‘t presented the way they actually look, but otherwise they would remain undetected by us.

The figure of movement that appears is an impersonal characteristic of a given landscape. It is a result of the weather conditions that particular day, but also of the markers being used. The entire procedure enables nature to yield a figure of movement. Invisible force is captured into a visible sign.

How does photographing on film (or using your material photographic process of predilection) inform your artistic practice?
This project is driven by coincidences. The weather the given day decides where I set up and what markers I can use. The markers are made mostly by things I find. Rough sea? Staying inshore. No wind, no kite. A digital fail proof process would not work with this. There are simply more coincidences with film. And as for that eventual strand on my negative upon the time of exposure, well, I like for that to follow me to the final product, the print, which I always do in a darkroom.