Sidsel Meineche Hansen, born 1981, is an artist based in London. The artist’s practice spans a diverse range of media including wood, clay and metals through which crafted objects are made, to Computer Generated Imagery, VR animations, video and other digital media. Hansen makes installations and artworks based on her ongoing enquiry into virtual and robotic bodies and their relationship to human labour within the gaming, pornographic and tech-industries. Many of her artworks examine virtual reality in connection to capitalist reality by appropriating existing means of digital production. The exhibition “Inner Child” at Bergen Kunsthall includes a newly commissioned Virtual Reality experience together with recent sculptural works.
The work Inner Child (tin) (2021) presents the title of the exhibition on the gallery wall in the form of individual letters cast in tin with the letter ‘h’ shaped as a crude kitchen knife. The letters and the knife re-appear as central elements in a live-rendered animation of the same title wherein the knife drops and divides a brain in half. The animation is the opening sequence of a live-rendered Virtual Reality experience, devised by three A.I. characters in a gory environment of interpersonal exchange. The artwork is based on the artist’s interest in the healing phenomena of the “inner child” as a pedagogical approach to trauma and co-dependency, which was popularised by the self-help movement.
Reflecting on the artist’s relationship to institutional frameworks, Hansen invited Bergen Kunsthall’s staff to take an attachment-style test based on their individual experience of intimate relationships. The work SECURE, (2021) which anonymously summarises the attachment style of the Kunsthall’s employees as a group, takes the form of a medal, stamped in silver, with resemblance to the Norwegian military award for meritorious achievements of importance to the nation and society.
The exhibition also includes a series of sculptural works by the artist which focuses on the social standing of groups based on inclusion and exclusion. These include: Home vs owner (rule of six) (2021), a cutlery set in silver, originally forged by hand and reproduced to a total of six cutlery sets, referencing the limit of social gatherings during lockdown measures in the UK; and Home vs owner 1 (2020), a chimney that the artist made from bricks, as the part of a house which can be made without building a family home.
Curated by Axel Wieder and Steinar Sekkingstad.
The exhibition is supported by Kulturrådet and Statens Kunstfond, Denmark