The quiet, introspective work of Trine Søndergaard thoughtfully reveals the landscapes within the mind, no matter what subject she choses to explore in front of her camera. Each image is filled with a potential that goes beyond what is actually depicted – and often the real subject of each photo is not so much what is shown, but what is not shown.
Her striking series, “Strude”, began at a local museum on a small Danish island - - - a garment called a ‘Strude’, worn by women in the past to protect their faces against the elements caught her eye. Since it was still worn at the island’s annual fete, she returned year after year to photograph the Strude series.
Trine writes, "In the traditional portrait the subject often meets the gaze of the viewer. In most of the images in Strude this meeting is doubly blocked: by the mask and by the averted face of the sitter. I’m interested in what lies beyond the direct gaze, in what happens when we can’t look people in the eye. My focus is the introversion and mental space that lies beyond the image. … I wanted to explore what happens when the meeting between the gaze of the subject and the viewer is deflected and denied.”
In her series “Interior”, Søndergaard explored uninhabited manors over a period of several years. The spaces had been empty sometimes for half a century - and yet, while they are empty shells of the past, the viewer cannot help but guess the lives once lived within it’s walls, or the experiences people once had in these places.
Her series for "Denmark in Transition” touches on some rather ethereal topics raised by the current movement toward conservation and rehabilitation of open spaces in that country - sometimes including areas that have been farmed for centuries. The real subject matter of these images may be outside our immediate view: What has been the intersection between man and nature within these landscapes? What will it become as nature reclaims it?
Trine Søndergaard lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Courtesy Martin Asbæk Gallery, Copenhagen & Bruce Silverstein Gallery, New York