Beyond the clichés: Real life in Norway

at Fishbar Gallery, London

Epic fjords, boundless nature and a population of statuesque blue-eyed Viking blondes seem to be the stereotypes often associated with Norway. One man who’s keen to lift the curtain of cliché and shine a light into the dustier corners of Norwegian life is photographer Eivind H. Natvig, who is launching his first UK solo exhibition You Are Here Now (Du Er Her No) at Fishbar Gallery in Dalston, East London. The show represents his own vision of his homeland, and it’s a very different Norway than the one many people are used to.

Natvig’s Norway is a country filled with darkness, humour, sharp colours and unpredictability. Instead of the typical black-and-white museum shots dripping with nostalgia, or the poised and polished panoramas a majestic landscape, Natvig gives us a collection of raw, stolen moments – honest, unpolished and charged with emotion. From road kill to the waste products of the fishing industry, he trains his lens on the unlooked-at elements of his motherland. Essentially, it’s a form of travel photography, stripped bare.

You Are Here Now – Du Er Her No. This is another Norway. Frames stolen from a movie about Norway that has never been made. It is about a wonderful exotic and strange society, even for a Norwegian. Photo by: Eivind H. Natvig/Moment/INSTITUTE

The award-winning Norwegian photojournalist has spent years travelling the world telling stories with his camera. After six years of working abroad, Natvig returned home to a staff job on a small newspaper.

“Pandora’s box was open… I had eight assignments throughout the country where there was 100% creative control. It was wonderful. I discovered that my countrymen are more welcoming than expected. This country which seemed so remote and so closed to me through all my years abroad was not that way at all,” Natvig says.

After his stint at the newspaper was over, Natvig decided to hit the road and travel through the country, relying on the kindness of strangers. You Are Here Now is a visual chronicle of his journey, a cross between documentary and fine art. These are pictures from a man rediscovering his own country, finding a strange and often surreal beauty in the everyday.

You Are Here Now - Du Er Her NoPhoto by: Eivind H. Natvig/Moment/INSTITUTE

You Are Here Now – Du Er Her No. Photo by: Eivind H. Natvig/Moment/INSTITUTE

Where:

Fishbar Gallery, 176 Dalston Lane, London , E8 1NG

 

Website:

When:

20 – 26 November

 

Tickets:

Free entry

Norwegian Art

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