A Portrait


Wood, metal

196 x 15 x 3 cm (77 3/16 x 5 7/8 in.)

Two pieces of wood are stacked on top of each other and hung on the wall. A long plank is positioned vertically and accompanied by a smaller one nailed parallel to its top. Henrik Olesen’s A Portrait depicts a conceptualised body that his long research has led him to multiply and sexualise.

According to Olesen, bodies are subject to rules and structures of sexual and political domination, especially in the family. Pieces of wood and ordinary objects become astonishing portraits. In 2009, he made portraits of his parents from wooden boards during a show at Studio Voltaire (London). This conceptual game asks us to question the conventional family structure, made up of a father, a mother and a child.

A Portrait was presented for the first time by the Pinault Collection during the 2015 "Slip of the Tongue" exhibition at the Punta della Dogana in Venice.
Henrik Olesen's other artwork