Coal and Birch
Stevie Dix & Sigve Knutson
There are conscious and unconscious ways in which artists are influenced and eventually grow more and more connected to the landscape of their hometowns, studios or adoptive lands.It is not always so straightforward and often neither such an important detail, yet when one approaches the art of Stevie Dix (b. 1990) and Sigve Knutson (b.1991), the two landscapes from which they come from become as evident and poignant, as much as antithetic and far from one another. The metallic, pitch black, coal mining hills of the Limburg area in Belgium, staining and informing deeply the paintings by Dix —who moved back to this particular place in the centre of Europe a few years ago— meet the sunny and fluorishing feelings ofKnutson’s sculptures, which so tactilely bring the viewer to the forested and green islands of Sørlandet, in the Southernmost tip of Norway, where he grew up and still has one of his studios. There’s more to both their practices and a complexity of personal and cultural references which surpasses and broadens these affiliations. Fashion and the way in which storytelling can be built around one's own past in Dix, as much as one of the most exciting dives intomaterial-based sculpture of this generation in Norway, stemming from design and surpassing its limits, for Knutson. Both share an unusual link to their materials, the savvy connection with crafts of one is definitely matched by the love for oil painting of the other, yet their results couldn’t be more different. Surprising and unexpected, it is a clash and weirdly a match, a balance of opposites, light and darkness, Coal and Birch.
By Mattia Lullini, Director & owner, NEVVEN
Coal and Birch
Sigve Knutson’s (b.1991, Lillesand, Norway) practice is driven by his exploration of toolsand materials and focuses on the intuitive and the spontaneous in the process of making. Deeply motivated by a drawing mentality, he creates sculptural objects that call for an interaction with the very materials, as much as a connection with our collective creative memory. Knutson holds an MA in Contextual Design from Design Academy Eindhoven (2016) and a BA in Design from The Oslo School of Architecture and Design (2014). He has been exhibited at Gerhardsen Gerner (Oslo, 2022), London Craft Week (2022), Carwan Gallery (Athens, 2021), Market Art Fair (Stockholm, 2021), Sørlandets Kunstmuseum (Kristiansand, 2020), Design Museum Gent (2020), Chart Design Fair (Copenhagen,2019), Norwegian Presence (Milan, 2018), Patrick Parrish Gallery (New York,2017), and Van Abbe museum (Eindhoven, 2017) among others. Knutson lives and works in Oslo, Norway.
Stevie Dix’s (b. 1990, Genk, Belgium) oils on canvas are bold and gestural, composed in an essential style where simple objects and minimalistic compositions are elevated to symbols and metaphors for intimate feelings and, at times, political perspectives. She had solo exhibitions at The Journal Gallery’sTennis Elbow (New York, 2022), L21 Gallery (Palma, 2021), Galerie Chloé Salgado(Paris, 2020), NEVVEN (Gothenburg, 2020), The Cabin (Los Angeles, 2017) and RodBarton Gallery (London, 2017). She has also been included in group shows at Het Stadsmuseum (Hasselt, 2021), Castor Gallery (London, 2020), Steve Turner Gallery (Los Angeles, 2019), Keteleer Gallery (Antwerp, 2018), Plus One Gallery (Antwerp, 2018 and 2017), Hanna Barry Gallery (London, 2017), and Carlsberg Byens Galleri och Kunstsalon (Copenhagen, 2017). Dix lives and works in Genk, Belgium.
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