LM vs. Christiane Spangsberg

Holly Terry

Being labelled as ‘fashions favourite artist’, Danish born Christiane Spangsberg oozes a sense of cool that one would only find in Copenhagen. As I spent the afternoon chatting with Christiane, it soon became clear to myself that Spangsberg, who's work exploded quite literally overnight, was more humble than you would expect for an artist who’s had her work published in the likes of Harpers Bazaar and Vogue. 

Spangsberg passionately describes her work as a mission to simplify the complexity of human kind, which is clear to see when the perfect simplicity of her one line drawings pose as a definitive contrast with the complex obscurities of the human form. There is little doubt that Christiane does well to master the creation of her desired aesthetics, often leaving more intrigue than resolution, which appears to be a dominant theme throughout her works. Spangsberg describes her artistic style with a passion and confidence which is to be regarded, discussing the way she creates an interest using line and colour. Keeping things simple, yet ensuring there is still some complexity, providing our grateful eyes with visuals worth viewing. 

Whats more, Spangsberg’s work skilfully portrays the imperfect, embracing failure and embracing flaws. “Sometimes, it is imperfection thats the most interesting, and same goes for human beings, we try to perfect ourselves, but, in a way, its not always interesting”. It would be safe to assume I was glad to be having this conversation with Spangsberg, which admittedly saw my self confidence sky rocket for a moment of bliss. If a world renowned artistic sensation says imperfection is boring, there is a high chance I'm going to ride with it. 

When questioned about her artistic taste, Spangsberg, completely unabashed, admitted “It’s quite funny. People often assume artists know a lot about art. I really don’t spend that much time looking at [it].” Although surprising, such an admittance is all the while refreshing. It’s safe to assume that Spangsberg remains open, straying far from posing as your cliché artist with an overpowering opinion on art, and everything else. 

While Christiane discusses her work with an envy inducing confidence, the way Spangsberg describes her artistic process remains completely humbled. When asked to recount her routine to practice, I found Spangsberg’s reply to stand as perhaps the most down to earth description I had ever received:  

I mostly work from home - where I feel most safe - and where I can relax. Sometimes I will go to a museum to practice drawing from sculptures, using them as my models and other times I will take nude drawing classes. Before I work I need to be alone for a while, sometimes I will just walk around the house doing nothing - for hours. I feel the time slowing down, and the house becomes a capsule for my thoughts - everything becomes like a bubble. And then I can work. I always listen to music, I think a lot. I think about everything, but I think about nothing too. Sometimes I will spend days on one subject, thinking deeply about it, trying to understand it.  I will try to educate myself, learn more, and in this practice I will draw as well. Somedays its not something philosophical, but just an experience I had and some days I have no idea, but I go off from a feeling within. It always depends on the day, the time of the year, the people Ive met, the conversations Ive had.

The woman can really do no wrong. 

Highlighting the way she feels so honoured for the praise her work has seen over the last months. Although, Spangsberg is not afraid to confide her feelings that at the end of the day the people will be the critics, which will show “if she starts to do bad work”. Though, such a notion would seem to have the odds of little to none, which was demonstrated through the undoubtable success of her recent exhibition ‘A Summer in the Nude’, curated by Jerico Contemporary in Sydney earlier this month. Spangsberg describes the exhibition as inspired by summer, featuring works which embody thought about summer, and women. 

Clearly passionate about such a theme, Spangsberg discusses the exposure of the naked woman, and the way in which her works strive to portray the vulnerable woman, “highlight being naked as an emotional space, showing who we are… [because] being naked, right now is a really important topic”. 

Following collaborations with Unconditional Magazine and Mattau Swim, Spangsberg’s collaboration with Sydney’s Paddington Inn saw her break into the Australian market, featuring an entire wall consisting of 10 of her works, in an epic interactive manner, which you can check out in person or online here. To come, Spangsberg’s fans will see her collaborate and design a T-shirt with J.V Reid, a womenswear label from London. 

You keep doing you, Christiane. 

To view more or purchase any of Christiane’s pieces, you can visit her Instagram,  @christianespangsberg or website www.christianespangsberg.com.

Holly Terry is a young lass from the 'burbs who enjoys painting and eating. You'll find her painting anything with an inch of available space, including her pet dog. When she is not cooped up at her job and favourite hobby, Davey Jones, she spends her days studying International Relations. She hopes to take on the world in future years and rewrite the entire series of Star Wars.