Søker akvarellens intensitet i oljemaleriet

Looking for the intensity of the watercolor in the oil painting

Elisabet Norseng has never been able to completely get away from the uniqueness of watercolour, even when she works in countless other materials.

May-Britt Bjørlo Henriksen

In the process leading up to the exhibition "Air", Elisabet Norseng has worked to transfer some of the lightness of watercolor into the oil painting. As a festival exhibitor in Galleri EKG, she shows 18 new watercolors and thirteen oil paintings in two halls.

The exhibition, which we can find on the Festspillene i Elverum programme, opens on Saturday 5 August at 1 p.m. With a performance of a work by Norseng's husband, the award-winning contemporary composer Sven Lyder Kahrs. The composition "The underside of the leaf" is performed by Kari Rønnekleiv (violin) and Kaja Aadne Thoresen (cello).

Time and space
In her works, Norseng seeks to bring out the immediate, whether she works with painting, photography, video or works on paper. An associative playfulness invites a large room for interpretation. How small indications or an abstract form can elicit a concrete image in the viewer. - The oil has its own patina, so the challenge is how can I use that patina and still achieve the lightness I seek, she says.
Norseng is no stranger to using oil painting as her form of expression, but she has for some time been captivated by the intensity of watercolour.

Through changes in light and time, Norseng tries to tell about something that occupies her. - I have a thread in what I make. You could say that I work very procedurally. There is a lot of time in changes and the light. I spend quite a long time making the pictures, says Norseng. As long as she manages to use the patina in oil paint to create these light effects, she thinks it's fine, but if she can't do it, it doesn't hold water for her. The focus on the procedural means that what she wants with the painting finds its form as part of the process. - This applies to both watercolor and oil paintings,
says the artist who lets himself be inspired by the moment.

The moment
That she has lived in Rome for several years, where she was, among other things, supervising artist at the Scandinavian Association (Directrice Circolo Scandinavo) for two and a half years, and in Paris, in the city she thinks is the capital of Europe, for 20 years. This is, of course, part of the basis of experience, but it is the moment and looking ahead that is important in the pictures she paints.

• That means I'm constantly trying to paint something new, I'm always moving forward, says Norseng. It is now around seven years since she and her husband found their way back to Norway, and chose to build in Hamar. The area where her father's family has roots. After a 10-year period of building applications, they were finally able to build a house with both a studio for Elisabet and for her husband. When they did that, they made sure that the workplace was on opposite sides of the house so that they both get peace of mind in their creative processes.

Cato Bødker at the Oslo Drawing and Painting School was Elisabet Norseng's first teacher - as a curiosity, Norseng mentions that he was also Bjarne Melgaard's teacher. Then she stayed at the Norwegian Academy of Fine Arts under Borge Berg and Ingrid Sitter. In materials science, she had Jørn Nilsen. Øyvind Åstein and Magne Austad in form and colour.

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