No Place presents:


Kristine Jakobsen

Booklaunch and exhibition

08.04.11 – 10.04.11

Opening: Friday 08.05.11, 19.00 – 23.00
Opening hours 14-17, Saturdays and Sundays

Language looks for absolute clarity where art is often about graduations.
– Wolfgang Tillmans

Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted.
– Aldous Huxley

Humans are divided between those who can still look through the eyes of youth and those who cannot.
– Dave Eggers

The camera needs to be an extension of your eyes, a translator of the moment into one frame that sums up everything seen and molds it into a sublime entity, which makes the rest of the moment – maybe one second, or ten seconds, or even a day – superfluous. We use video or transcriptions of experiences as methods for grasping the full moment; still they are not sufficient as tools for translating the whole of an experience. Playing back a recording of a sound might be an excellent way of recalling that moment, for the person who recorded it, but it’s only pure fiction of the senses for someone outside of the experience recorded, and if the subject listening doesn’t have the ability to visualize internally… nothing. So photography is basically the only method for grabbing essence, and so the most essential tool for summing up has turned democratic. Only ten years ago photography was an exclusive medium, in the sense that a «good» picture or a «bad» picture was defined by the photographer. (Or should I perhaps rather say: the human being behind the camera?) Now, with the proliferation of social media making the conventional platforms for publishing obsolete, the process of democratization of photography has entered a radical stage (some might call this visual anarchy). In the wake of this media revolution the taking of a truly excellent picture is no longer a prerogative of “the master photographer”, but something each and every individual can aspire to. There’s been a long time since the masters of documentary photography were able to create pictures like «The Girl In The Picture», the photograph that almost alone turned the tides against the war in Vietnam. Napalm-burned child running toward the camera with her arms outstretched. A snapshot. Quantity in the media has a way of obscuring the icons that could have been created. With inflation symbols turn obscure and lose their power. This is a pessimistic approach, but I hold that there is a way out. To turn to the sublime. Kristine Jakobsen does this and it’s hard to see how or to explain why, but she does. The method cannot be summed up within the confines of on one page. One would think that the way of breaking with the dominating tendencies of today’s photography would be to put yourself above everyone else, or distancing yourself from the world we in fact live in – which has turned more and more virtual – and that method is fine but not substantial. What Jakobsen does is taking the honest methods of the amateur and tilting them, perfecting them by making them more obscure, ending up at the sublime. That is a gift. Not a gift for the artist/photographer/human being shutting the mirror, but a gift for us. It’s a way of deleting the borders between harmony and disharmony and ending up revealing a lurid beauty that again underlines how fragile existence is while still confronting it. The essence of photography has always been existential and not material. Photography has never been labor, or labor in photography has always reached for the manipulative. In a very few photographers I see this need for catching the imperfect moment inside a perfect moment, like the photograph was taken during a migraine attack, where fog enters your field of vision, but it’s not part of your reality. The colors changes hue, but you’re the only one seeing it… Her pictures are almost color blind, and very seldom concrete. In that sense they are ultimately undone, and so can live on forever. Like that last page of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, a book of fiction that is not fiction, an autobiography that is not an autobiography, by a writer who is not a writer, of that amazing moment when the frisbee obscures the sun. Just for a moment. A fraction of time. Jakobsen’s photographs are not photographs, they are moments without being moments, they are lingering in insecurity. Redefining what is and what isn’t while still not being pretentious or ambitious enough to die, by trying to define anything. They cannot be boxed. Her pictures are weak and fragile, but when we’re weak we’re strong, and attacking them would be like attacking a child. I never met a naive child. I see the child behind her eyes. By turning dullness into entertainment we make our possibilities to live almost infinite. It’s about never turning blind.