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New Special Exhibition: "When Everyday Life Stole the Picture - in Holland and Denmark" at Nivaagaard

In the flourishing 17th-century Dutch art scene, a remarkable shift occurred as painters increasingly turned to depicting everyday events and objects. In the 19th century, Denmark followed suit with similar motifs, later highlighted as the Danish Golden Age. Nivaagaard presents an innovative exhibition that juxtaposes renowned masterpieces and overlooked treasures from both periods.

The Exhibition - "When Everyday Life Stole the Picture - in Holland and Denmark" at Nivaagaard

On January 28, 2024, Nivaagaard opens a magnificent special exhibition delving into two periods of art history. With a 200-year gap, these periods broke with previous artistic representations, and everyday life conquered canvases and homes.

Genre Painting in Focus

The exhibition focuses on genre painting, where anonymous individuals take centre stage in narrative motifs within everyday surroundings. These images, sensual and humorous, quirky or moralizing, are rich in details, such as glittering copper kettles, soft textiles, and reflections in a beer glass.

Stories from Everyday Life

These genre paintings are constructed narratives of lived life, reflecting what could be seen, heard, smelled, and tasted. Over 100 works from leading museums and private collections in Holland, the USA, France, England, Sweden, and Denmark provide viewers with insights into intimate spaces, wild worlds, untamed emotions, great beauty, desire, and hunger for life.

Everyday Life and Sensuality - with a 200-year Gap

Artists in 17th-century Holland and Denmark revolutionized the depiction of everyday life while simultaneously developing new forms of still life, landscape painting, and marine painting. Dutch Baroque was admired for its lively portrayal of ordinary people's lives, while Danish Guldalder painters in the 19th century chose to paint the immediate world around them.

Sensuality and Humour

In contrast to Dutch painting, Danish Guldalder painters present a quieter form of sensuality. The humour still sparkles in caricatured stories depicting society's personalities. Genre paintings gained popularity in their time, but some Danish genre painters were underestimated in later times.

Baroque and Golden Age – in Collection and Current Research

The founder of Nivaagaard, Johannes Hage, was inspired by the Danish Golden Age and Dutch painting genres. The museum proudly presents the exhibition "When Everyday Life Stole the Picture – in Holland and Denmark," which unites two of the museum's collection areas in an international format.

Significance of Research

The exhibition is based on art historian Kasper Lægring's post-doctoral research project on Dutch and Danish genre painting, funded by Ny Carlsbergfondet and Aarhus University. It also benefits from ongoing research in the Dutch and Flemish collection at Nivaagaard, supported by the Ministry of Culture's Research Fund and conducted by the museum's special consultant, Prof. Dr. Jørgen Wadum, and Dutch art historian Dr. Angela Jager.

Exhibition Details

  • Title: When Everyday Life Stole the Picture - in Holland and Denmark
  • Date: January 28 - June 16, 2024
  • Address: Gammel Strandvej 2, 2990 Nivå

3-in-30-days ticket

Buy the 3-in-30-day ticket and get access to the Karen Blixen Museum Rungstedlund, Kunsthallen Gl. Holtegaard and Nivaagaards Malerisamling for 30 days (valid for one visit to each place). The card can be purchased at all three locations.