The publication is part of my contribution to The Maria Project curated by Matthias Borello. Based at Maria Church in the Vesterbro district of Copenhagen, the project aims to create social and ethical models for dialogue, gatherings and society at large by exploring the space provided and created by the church and visual arts.
The publication includes a series of narrative and visual representations of different locations of the church neighbourhood. These include a shelter for the homeless, a fix room for drug users, a centre for women sex workers, a local clinic for the homeless, and the church’s own drop-in centre and weekly soup kitchen.
I have been in close dialogue with the users and staff of each place in order to portray their lives, listening to the personal experiences and stories that form the core of the publication.
Public space is where people meet, talk and clash. But it is also a place where older women are often invisible. Contemporary culture worships beauty,discriminating against age in favour of youth. This is especially prevalent in media representations of women that confront us with impossible ideals of beauty, and the ageist stereotypes in mainstream culture that position older women as less attractive sexually – and on the job market.
This is the background and inspiration for the billboard project HOMAGE TO OLDER WOMEN in Saint Petersburg. The billboards present a much more diverse and powerful image of older women – paying tribute to their wrinkles, wisdom and ways by bringing new images into public space. 115 women artists from Russia, Turkey, Morocco, and Scandinavia are invited to present their personal take on HOMAGE TO OLDER WOMEN in photographic artworks exhibited on billboards in Saint Petersburg – an alternative to the commercial advertising that dominates public space worldwide. The invited artists of different generations all present their personal view of an older generation of women.
The project is a tribute, a celebration, and an opportunity to create a crossgenerational, cross-border community presenting a different view of older women.
The book Hanne Lise Thomsen offers an overview of Hanne Lise Thomsen’s public art works produced in numerous locations in Denmark and around the world over the last 20 years. Her work is both aesthetic and political: she is interested in occupying urban spaces with images and in shaping the messages conveyed through these spaces. Elements of her public practice take the form of support for women’s rights, for the rights of refugees and the homeless, seeking to provide counter-narratives to the oversimplified representations of minorities, and which often nuance and influence public debates about these topics.
Essays by Ditte Vilstrup Holm and Mette Sandbye
Book Design by Jeanne Betak
MEMORIES is a collaboration with people in the neighbourhood of RAASMATUKOGU, creating a social space where each individual resident participates with their own photographs,with their personal history. The familiar, everyday life of the past and the present: individual memories that form parallels in a projection of visual diversity.
MEMORIES throws people’s experiences into relief, challenging perceptions of urban social cohesion. The changing images throw light on the buildings, creating an atmosphere that alternates between the intimate and the epic. The illuminated projections incorporate the windows and doors of the building to create a kaleidoscopic universe.
75 posters tells the stories of the refugees’ personal spaces, what it is like to leave your family, friends and belongings behind in order to begin a new life in an unfamiliar part of the world. The project focuse on open and inclusive communication in public space, and is therefore located under Queen Louise’s Bridge on Nørrebrogade street. The tunnel as a passage and the neighbouring walls are included in the montage, which in this way cover an area of 165 meters. A perfect place to tell the story of people on the move.
Visual artist Hanne Lise Thomsen has researched and collected material for INSIDE OUT ISTEDGADE, by selecting and visiting 40 apartments in Istedgade.
The publication contains image documentation of the video installation Inside Out, which was projected in Istedgade in September 2015 on the gables of the Gasworks Road school. As well as pictures and stories from Istedgade residents, shop owners and professional actors about life in and around the street.
The publication was created with the support of the Danish Arts Foundation and the City of Copenhagen’s grant to the City’s beautification and general good.
A site-specific video installation by visual artist Hanne Lise Thomsen.
Inside Out Istedgade will be shown in August / September 2015 and has been launched by the National Arts Foundation and the City of Copenhagen.
BILLBOARD FESTIVAL CASABLANCA indtager 63 gigantiske Billboards (4 × 3 m) i hjertet af den marokkanske millionby. Et projekt, der giver kvindelige nordiske og marokkanske billedkunstnere en usædvanlig platform, hvor tusindvis af indbyggere dagligt ser dem og får udfordret deres vante forestillinger om byens rum, køn og identitet.
The image of President Al-Assad was present everywhere on the facades and billboards of Damascus. In order to establish an opposition to this one-sided impression, the idea of the project was to portray the street vendors of Damascus and have them appear in a video loop which focused on their individuality. By incorporating buildings in Damascus, Working Class Heroes was visible to everyone and at the same time gave the place a spatial dimension.
40,000 Palestinians live in the Shuafat Refugee Camp, which was founded in 1966 and lies 4 kilometers north of the center of Jerusalem. The refugee camp is surrounded on all sides by Israeli settlements, as well as the contentious “security wall”, which isolates the camp from the rest of East Jerusalem. The inhabitants of Shuafat Refugee Camp experience daily abuse from the Israeli occupation forces, who for example shut off the water supply, raid the camp and raze houses. In other words, it is most often violent images that impinge on our consciousness.