Wednesday, 29 January 2014


Ole Ukena is  a conceptual artist that interweaves a variety of media including text, video, photography, drawing & sculpture. Ukena’s diverse media work takes various forms, bound by a common thread of complex simplicity. This unfolding dance between challenging artistic practice and innocent questioning of the “is-ness” of our world defines the very essence of his works. Ukena’s dance often mesmerizes as the juvenile forms an unlikely yet impactful partnership with the spiritually refined.  With a wink and a nudge, youthful, playful enthusiasm confronts buttoned-up “maturity”. Sometimes poetically narrative, and in other moments purposefully reduced, Ukena frequently uses language as a tool to build riddles that await completion in the viewer’s mind.  His choice of material and medium becomes a metaphor that challenges the status quo. And as his childlike game continues the underlying message invites the viewer into ongoing personal 

12,000 toy soldiers fixed to a canvas-like board, forming a peace sign. A bright colored rainbow, a symbol of paradise, seemingly harmless at first, but made of barbwire. Building riddles that await to be solved by the viewer himself, artist, Ole Ukena, creates diverse media works with an intriguing sense of humor.
He draws his inspiration of sources as psychology, philosophy, spirituality, always positioning his themes around subjects as individual vs. collective, identity and transformation as well as the creative potential of failure. Exploring the field of interrelated opposites his message of his recent work manifests itself through the precise choices of medium. He is sometimes poetically narrative or purposefully reduced, binding his work by a common thread of complex simplicity, leading the viewer astray but always lending a hand on the way back.

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