Bjørnar Aaslund is a Norwegian artist, born in 1960.
Aaslund was born in the little town of Gjøvik, located on the banks of Norway’s largest lake Mjøsa. As a child he was fascinated by the change of seasons, and especially by the mirroring of the nature in the forest ponds. Later in life when he started to paint and draw, he always tried to capture the power of the rural landscape.
Bjørnar Aaslund is an abstract painter who likes to define his work as memories of non-existent landscapes. Bjørnar Aaslund likens the process of beginning a painting to stepping into the white surface of untouched snow. Through the destruction of the subject where composition and perspectives are broken down into rhythms, surfaces and brush strokes, Aaslund focuses on the intuitive reading of nature and his own surroundings.
By using repetitions, different directions in brush strokes as well as different depth effects, he creates abstract landscapes that alternate between something recognizable and at the same time completely unknown. Always working from memory, Aaslund combines what he has seen with subjective experiences and moods, approaching different landscapes in an abstract language, with layer upon layer of color, some transparent, others opaque, forming the substance of the paintings.
To me it is fascinating to see how far I can go with breaking up the element of nature, rearrange the organic forms, and reconstruct a landscape from memory with the use of color. The landscape possesses noise and silence, strength and melancholy. There lives a great light in it, and a great darkness.
To start a painting is like stepping into the white surface of untouched snow. To paint is to leave colored traces within a limited area. The marks and tracks expand the pictorial space and lift the surface. The canvas becomes an arena where time and space are erased and float into each other. The marks then become part of the history, and time evolves as a new dimension. My encounter with landscape and nature give rise to all my paintings. These encounters are processed and transformed, to then be reproduced as an abstract form of reality. That is why I like to say that my paintings are memories from non-existent landscapes. I want to create an emotional space, not reproduce reality.
I use color to build space, not classical perspective lines. Layer upon layer of color, some transparent, others opaque, forms the substance of the paintings and carries the history you sense but cannot see. Maybe you will be able to see movement relative to standstill, the troubled relative to the quiet, distance relative to closeness, and that some of this will evoke memories of your own experiences from hidden and forgotten landscapes.
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