Yuki Ferdinandsen: The beat is my soul

af | 20. mar, 2022 | ENGLISH

Matter at Hand, Yuki Ferdinandsen. Foto: Dorte Krogh

Matter at Hand

Matter at Hand – Ten Artist in Denmark is an exhibition created in collaboration with the Danish Art Foundation and the American gallery Hostler Burrows. The exhibition opened in New York in Autumn 2021 and is now showing in L.A, the gallery’s second location.

Matter at Hand is also a catalogue with ten condensed portraits by me, among other texts. I have been given the permission to publish the portraits on my platform. The ten artists are:

Anne Brandhøj
Stine Bidstrup
Astrid Krogh
Jakob Jørgensen
Bjørn Friborg
Hanne G
Maria Sparre-Petersen
Martin Bodilsen Kaldahl
Pernille Pontoppidan Pedersen
Yuki Ferdinandsen

The team behind the co-lab is:
The Danish Art Foundation
Hostler Burrows; Juliet Burrows and Kim Hostler
Curator: Nanna Balslev Strøyer
Photographer Dorte Krogh
Writer: Charlotte Jul
Translation: Dorte Herholdt Silver
Graphic design: Laura Silke og Line-Gry Hørup
Co-editor, US-translation: Juliet Burrows

www.hostlerburrows

Silversmith Yuki Ferdinandsen is one of the Danish artists in the exhibition Matter at Hand – Ten Artists in Denmark, showing at the American gallery Hostler Burrows with locations in L.A. and New York.

Yuki Ferdinandsen lives and breathes her work in silver. She no longer hears the noisy hammer blows as she works in her studio; rhythm and sound accompany each other in meditative waves, surrounding her and resonating inside as integral parts of her person and artist. Silver has been Ferdinandsen’s material for the past 40 years, and her refined hollowware objects represent a fusion of Japan and Denmark through the ARARE technique. In her own words, she sees Denmark through a Japanese lens, and vice versa.

And it truly feels as if the two countries have fused into one in Ferdinandsen’s silver objects, which draw on the samurais’ nearly 400-year-old defensive technique of hammering round chased bumps on their armor to fend off the enemy’s arrows. Ferdinandsen took this historical and legendary technique and made it her own, creating her singular expression after diminishing the size of the bumps. Now, they appear as graphic dots, which are first drawn on the back of the silver and then hammered, one by one. Twenty blows per bump. An impressive piece such as “Silence”, which has 4,048 bumps, requires 80,960 hammer blows – or four months’ full-time, concentrated work in the studio.

Matter at Hand, Yuki Ferdinandsen. Foto: Dorte Krogh

But it is intended to be hard work, intense and challenging, requiring complete focus and discipline. Ferdinandsen finds the work relaxing, even if that may seem like a contradiction in terms. But when you are your material and your process, and the result sets the bar so extremely high, that makes sense. Ferdinandsen enjoys every stroke and every sound and taps her foot to the rhythm, joy rippling throughout her being. Her ambition and her work never suffer from fatigue. This is her Hammer Dance, and this is how she works.

Ferdinandsen’s sculptures are the ultimate in refinement of technique and material, and their aesthetic balances those of Danish Modern and contemporary design. For decades she has earned recognition and accolades from around the world for her unique designs in silver, a material that is simultaneously cool and warm, matte and shiny. Her works have weight and volume but also shimmer with an ethereal quality when light  reflects on their surface.

Yuki Ferdinandsen makes her own tools, and her studio is full of punches in different sizes. Chasing a flower – another technique she uses in addition to ARARE – can require up to 30 punches in different sizes. Unable to leave that degree of precision to anyone else, she personally designs all her own punches. The works carry titles with meditative references to nature and the world around her, such as “Silence”, “Sound of Ocean” and “Hanabi” (Japanese for fireworks).

The Fibonacci sequence is a natural phenomenon that plays a key role in Ferdinandsen’s practice, a mathematical system of design wherein the innermost and outermost circles comprise the same number of dots, producing a visual impression of infinity – meticulously chased silver dots in a never-ending circle dance. In recent years, she has begun to subject the Fibonacci sequence to tiny disruptions, challenging expectations ever so slightly while her signature essence remains intact and recognizable in the new interpretation. The countless dots may seem insignificant, but together, they are invincible, an army of tiny, high-precision silver bumps, a sublime manifestation of Ferdinandsen’s mind and spirit.

Matter at Hand, Yuki Ferdinandsen. Foto: Dorte Krogh

Matter at Hand

Matter at Hand – Ten Artist in Denmark is an exhibition created in collaboration with the Danish Art Foundation and the American gallery Hostler Burrows. The exhibition opened in New York in Autumn 2021 and is now showing in L.A, the gallery’s second location.

Matter at Hand is also a catalogue with ten condensed portraits by me, among other texts. I have been given the permission to publish the portraits on my platform. The ten artists are:

Anne Brandhøj
Stine Bidstrup
Astrid Krogh
Jakob Jørgensen
Bjørn Friborg
Hanne G
Maria Sparre-Petersen
Martin Bodilsen Kaldahl
Pernille Pontoppidan Pedersen
Yuki Ferdinandsen

The team behind the co-lab is:
The Danish Art Foundation
Hostler Burrows; Juliet Burrows and Kim Hostler
Curator: Nanna Balslev Strøyer
Photographer Dorte Krogh
Writer: Charlotte Jul
Translation: Dorte Herholdt Silver
Graphic design: Laura Silke og Line-Gry Hørup
Co-editor, US-translation: Juliet Burrows

www.hostlerburrows

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