The special exhibition Harald Giersing – Tales of Modernism invites visitors to explore a wealth of colourful and dynamic works.
Wishing to radically renew the art of painting, Harald Giersing (1881–1927) strove for a modern mode of expression, experimenting with bold fields of colour and rapidly applied, coarse and expressive brushstrokes. This exhibition offers insight into his experimental approach to painting, showing a wide range of works from his entire oeuvre – from his monumental figure scenes and depictions of modern subject matter taken from the realms of performing arts and sports to landscape paintings full of speed and movement, faceless portraits, graveyards, still lifes and self-portraits.
With this special exhibition, Faaborg Museum, Randers Kunstmuseum and Sorø Kunstmuseum join forces to take a fresh, research-based look at Harald Giersing. Featuring works from the three museums’ own collections supplemented by important loans from other museums and private collections in Denmark and abroad, the exhibition is the largest overall presentation of Giersing’s artistic endeavours in twenty-five years.
Back in his own day, Harald Giersing held a central place in the early modernism movement of the twentieth century, inspiring an entire generation of young artists, partly as a painter, but also as a teacher at his own painting school, as a writer and as an active driving force in the founding of the artists’ association Grønningen.
The artist entered the circle of the Funen Painters – and, thus, the Faaborg Museum collection – through family connections: Giersing married Fritz and Anna Syberg’s daughter Besse. Giersing repeatedly used his wife as a model in his paintings, and she appears in several of the pictures featured in the exhibition, easily recognisable by her page-style haircut. Giersing and Besse were given a house in Svanninge as a wedding gift, and they spent the summer there every year from 1919 to 1925. Giersing explored the South Funen landscape from his motorcycle and painted a number of landscape paintings with the local country roads as subject matter, including Road to Svanninge from 1919.