Anita Houvenaeghel


26th August – 9th December 2018


The artist Anita Houvenaeghel b. 1945, works with church decorations in an almost abstract language. In her artwork  you will find traces and responses of the repressed and pent-up rooms of the childhood. With Houvenaeghel the space room is redeemed in nature, but in a redemption more characterized by an explosion of energy. This room of energy is also found in her religious works. For this reason Anita Houvenaeghel takes part in raising the question: what is religious art today and where are the boundaries of the religious room.


In this exhibition the museum wants to focus on responses which arise between various artistic expressions, but also in one individual artists’ work and not the least between the religious and the non-religious and between the human life and the drama and energy of nature. The exhibition invites to reflection on the way in which we solve our world. Are we looking upon it as a place, where differences can create something fruitful or as a place where things are separated? This is basic existential questions, dealing with the way, in which we see ourselves as human beings of this world.


The themes of the exhibition

The exhibition will not only show Houvenaeghel’s religious works, but show  them together with her other productions. Here it becomes clear that there is a big coherence between the CLAUSTROPHOBIC ROOMS OF CHILDHOOD and the room of the church, but in the latter room there is an opening towards the eternal space, revealing itself in pictures, where the churchroom almost looks like a ruin.

The walls have tumbled down, and openings into the unknown appear. Her painted room makes you think of the French artist Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) installations over the scary rooms of the childhood which among others contain amorphous parts of bodies. With Houvenaeghel these bodylike shapes form an equivocal duplicity arranged on a podium that could be a Communion table or a table for offerings. With these artworks, she directs our minds to the function of the bread and the wine in the Christian church service, and at the same time, the body is being exposed as meat.


Another theme in the exhibition is NATURE AS A SPACE. By help of the curator it will become evident, how the energy in the Nordic nature finds its way to the church decorations. In this way Houvenaeghel produces the divine creation as an explosion of energy. The energy in the pictures, however, it not a destructive energy, as the pictures have an underlying order which leaves the impression that the energy is positive, creating a gap to something new and better. In the same way as the claustrophobic space was blown into pieces.


The last theme in the exhibition is the relation between WORDS AND PICTURES. Houvenaeghel has in the recent years worked in a Japanese inspired calligraphic idiom, where few colours, with black as the principal colour, both points towards the text and the nature. The works are often very big with a graphic simplicity, found in the Japanese art. Thus, not surprisingly, she has illustrated a translation of the great Japanese poet Shuntaro Tanikawa. The poems and the original illustrations will be part of the exhibition, and Houvenaeghel’s own poems will be exhibited as well. Also in this way the responses are found between words and pictures.




Lecture (in Danish):  28th October, at 16.30 - 18.30. 

The Nature, the light and the belief by Anita Houvenaeghel.

Price 75.00 DKK

Free puclic tour in the exhibition at 14.00 on Sundays from 2nd September till 9th December.


The exhibition has been supported by



Picture: Anita Houvenaeghel, Opstandelsen, 2007

Johannes Larsen

  Birds of Passage in Art and Poetry           

               26th August – 9th December 2018


The exhibition

The exhibition Johannes Larsen. Birds of Passage in Art and Poetry shows the work of Johannes Larsen with the bird as a motif, through his contribution to Steen Steensen Blicher’s collection of poems: Trækfuglene (1838) (Migratory birds). The exhibition acclaims the book art, which Johannes Larsen created when he in 1911-13 made woodcuts for a reprint of Blicher’s famous suite of poems. The exhibition brings the book and the woodcuts in a dialogue with the other works of the artist with migratory birds, as well as with modern Danish writers new-interpretations of Blicher’s poems in Ny Trækfuglene (2014) (New Migratory birds).


Trækfuglene is the principal lyric work of Steen Steensen Blicher and consists of 30 bird poems, each describing its bird, beginning with a prelude and an overture. The poems were written during a period of serious illness, and several of them circle about life and death, with a positive vision, where spring becomes an image of life everlasting. Especially the ”Præludium” (The prelude) – known as ”Sig nærmer Tiden, da jeg maa væk” – has death as a motif.


Johannes Larsen, who worked with the bird motif all his life, was engaged in Blicher’s poems, and he let the poet add new dimensions to his work with birds, which according to him gave nature a voice and a soul. Behind Johannes Larsen’s work with the woodcuts lies a thorough and almost scientific knowledge about the birds. He had worked with the birds as motif in his art for several decades.


New birdpoems

In the exhibition words meet pictures. The exhibition moves through chosen migratory birds from the book and lets the woodcuts and the printed poems supplement the works from the collection of Faaborg Museum, where Johannes Larsen works with the birds of the book in watercolours and oil on canvas. Blicher’s poems have a contemporary literary perspective through the new-interpretation of them in the book Ny Trækfuglene from 2014. Here 32 Danish writers were invited to write new poems and short stories about Blicher’s migratory birds. Contributors are for instance leading  poets like Pia Juul and Klaus Rifbjerg as well as younger writers such as Amalie Smith, Kristina Stoltz and Christel Wiinblad. The book had fine reviews, but has not earlier been linked to the pictorial art. A film will be part of the exhibition showing poets from Ny Trækfuglene reciting chosen poems: Rasmus Halling Nielsen, Lea Løppenthin, Kristina Stoltz and Christel Wiinblad.


The exhibition is curated by Faaborg Museum where it was also shown earlier. A catalogue has been produced and will be available in the museum shop and on our web shop.




Nature concert, Trækfuglene

18th November at 17.00.


During this concert Nis Bank-Mikkelsen recites poems from Steen Steensen Blicher’s Trækfuglene together with newly written bird texts. The music is klezmer and jazz standards with Jens Schou on clarinet and Anders Singh on accordion. Price 125 DKK, incl. entrance fee for the exhibition and a glass of wine.


Free public tour in the exhibition at 14.00 on Sundays from 2nd September to 9th December.


The exhibition project is supported by:


 Augustinus Fonden


15. juni Fonden


Den Faberske Fond


Møllerens Fond


Picture: Johannes Larsen, Ryler på stranden, 1913

Future exhibitions

Previous exhibitions

Thomas Kluge - God, King and Country
6th of september to 13th of december 2015

Ellen Hofman-Bang
7th February - 5th of June 2016

Sigurd Swane - Painting
12th June 2016 - 28th August 2016

Kunsten i Lyset - Glaskunst fra Per Steen Hebsgaards værksted
4th September - 30th December 2016

Barbara Kruger - Gluttony
5 February - 28 May 2017

Peter Brandes - A golden altar for the church of Nørre Nissum
5 February - 21 May 2017

Jeppe Hein - To sense the world inside yourself
4th June - 17th September 2017

Image storm - Otherness from the Reformation until today
1 October - 30 December 2017

Bodil Kaalund 1930 - 2016
9th November - 29th April 2018

THESES Danish contemporary artists in dialogue with the reformation
21st January - 29th April 2018

Becoming Animal
13th May - 12th Aug. 2018

The Museum of Religious Art
Strandvejen 13
DK7620 Lemvig

Phone [+45] 97810371


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