Interior With A Young Man Reading (1898)
Collection: Den Hirschsprungske Samling, Copenhagen
Five Portraits (1901-1902)
Collection: Thielska Galleriet, Stockholm
Self Portrait (1889-1890)
Collection: Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen
Self Portrait (1895)
Collection: Fondation Custodia, Paris
Self Portrait (1913)
Collection: Gallerie Degli Uffizi, Florence
all photographs © 2019 Leslie Hossack
Hammershøi’s inner circle consisted of his mother Frederikke, his sister Anna and his wife Ida, all of whom were introduced in the previous Haute Vitrine post. His circle also included his brother Svend, as well as several friends and colleagues from Copenhagen’s broader artistic community.
In 2019, at the exhibition entitled Hammershøi: The Master of Danish Painting, at the Musée Jacquemart-André in Paris, gallery-goers met some of the significant men in Hammershøi’s life. In the massive painting Five Portraits (190 x 300 cm) we see, gathered around a table, architect Thorvald Bindesbøll, art historian Karl Madsen, painter J.F. Willumsen, painter Carl Holsøe and the artist’s brother Svend Hammershøi who is in the foreground smoking a pipe.
“Hammershøi’s modernism explodes in Five Portraits (Thielska Galleriet, Stockholm), a monumental canvas that he considered his masterpiece and which caused a scandal when it was first exhibited in 1902. The atmosphere in this representation of the group of artists who were close to Hammershøi is not in the least festive. Again, there is no interaction between the sitters, each of whom is looking in a different direction. The feeling of strangeness is enhanced by the chiaroscuro, which creates a spectacular—almost gloomy—nocturnal scene.”
Press Kit, Hammershøi: The Master of Danish Painting, Musée Jacquemart-André and Culturespaces (2019)
Leslie Hossack’s photographs above also present the artist himself. In these three self portraits, we can follow the changes in Hammershøi’s face, and his style of painting, over the course of more than two decades.
Hammershøi’s oeuvre consists of portraits, landscapes, architecture, nudes and interiors. However, it was his interiors that were the most popular in his lifetime (1864-1916) and continue to draw the strongest response today. Hammershøi painted over 100 interiors in the various apartments he shared with his wife Ida in Copenhagen. Their home was both his studio and a major motif in his work.
Over a century ago, Danish painter Vilhelm Hammershøi elevated
“Stay At Home. Work At Home.” to an art form.
Leslie Hossack’s Hammershøi Photographs are part of a larger body of work that explores Hitler’s Berlin, Stalin’s Moscow, Mussolini’s Rome, Churchill’s London, contested sites in Jerusalem, the NATO Headquarter Camp in Kosovo, buildings linked to the Japanese Canadian internment during WWII, the D-Day landing beaches of Normandy, the Nazi-occupied Channel Islands, Scotland’s Freemasons and Sigmund Freud’s Vienna.
To view more photographs by Leslie Hossack, please visit lesliehossack.com