Dorte’s practice works with our human search for meaning and belonging. Our search for a true identity and the feelings associated with this task, such as the feeling of authenticity.
“There are so many things in my past, my present, in my reality and in my dreams – all of which are a part of me. Most people handle this feeling by flowing between roles and identities in their everyday life. I am a mum, a daughter, a sister, a wife, a student, an artist, a friend and so on. The privilege we have as artists is to bring everything together from our roles, from our mental, physical, sensual and spiritual existence. This is what gives the artist a feeling of realness – a feeling of authenticity. As artists we are able to get everything in our existence to flow together”.
The flow is a recurring theme in Dorte’s sculptures. Her process involves outlines but also an attention to detail. “I want to go on because it is in the process I experience the feeling of authenticity; I don’t want to let go – so I stay with it. I am enjoying the flow between my hand and mind”.
Philosophical thinking is an important part of Dorte’s practice – the existentialists in particular, dealing as they do with identity and authenticity. “Over time I have found myself much more attracted to internal scrutiny – our self – rather than our social identity and that is how I have ended up going back to the flow in our mind – the work with the Self. Others keep us away from our true self and removed from the feeling of authenticity. I try to capture the flow of the mind with our earthly existence. Everything flows together in a sensual, ironic and paradoxical way”.
Her work appears serious and playful at the same time. It is also provocative but in a polite manner – it seduces but does not offend. One of her works is a bust, a historical way of portraying our identity – this identity flows and connects to the plinth made of a solid piece of oak wood.
“I made the bronze in a highly polished finish to get the self-reflection involved and the plinth is taller than normal so it has a bodily dimension to it. When you stand in front of it, you see yourself and it connects you to your many different realities”.
“Like many artists I have a craving for materials and have worked with many different types, but I tend to gravitate towards bronze and wood. Bronze because of its warm, soft and sensual feel. It is just like skin, it oxidises and changes colour over time. Wood represents time as well as the power and strength of the natural world. The natural world’s mortality is superior to ours and confronts us, with our own existence. When we are in nature, we belong and we get close to the feeling of authenticity, but at the same time we enjoy conquering it and impacting it. Thus it affects our behaviour in a peculiar way. I like to use wood in my work to symbolise time and this relation to our natural world”.