MUNTHE ART MONDAY: CHRISTINA ELVIRA GODSK
Please introduce yourself and tell us about what you do
My name is Christina Elvira Godsk and I am a visual artist. My work lies upon the figurative and narrative universe - connecting reality and fantasy. I illustrate and tell stories about what means to be a human. Identity, culture, and relationship has always inspired me. I believe that coming from a quite heterogeneous family in terms of cultures and religions has played a key role in my work – I see the cultural aspect constantly influencing my work and the stories I chose to tell.
The characters I paint are often navigating in their own universe as in an endless dream. During the Covid-19 lockdown in March 2020 I started to paint small portraits of people based on photos. The isolation and distance brought by Covid-19 made us more conscious about our closed relationships. I got fascinated by all the photos people kept on their phones – those are true memories to share. I feel privilege and inspired by the stories and photos people chose to share with me - there is so much energy in this exchange. Through their story and my interpretation, a new narrative emerges.
Could you explain more about how being a woman has affected your career?
I believe that becoming a mother have had the biggest impact in my artistic career. It was very difficult to cope with both worlds - a good mother and a dedicated artist.
It was difficult to find the resources to dedicate myself to painting and I ended by putting my art career on pause for some years while having 3 small kids. Not been able to dedicate myself to art was a high price to pay, but when I look backwards, I am sure that this was the right decision at that time. During those years, I took a bachelor's degree in pedagogy and aesthetic learning and dedicated myself on how we could use and make art accessible and relevant for children. Today, I run short-medium term workshops with children in close cooperation with schools.
Can you name some other female (artist) that inspires you and explain why they do so?
I use Instagram to keep an eye on what is going on in the art world. There are so many passionate and inspiring female artists out there. I would name Rusudan Khizanishvili and Jessie Makinson as two of the artists I get inspired by their imaginary and mythological universe - an explosion of colors and fascinating storytelling. The unknown and exotic is at stake; they brilliantly manage to unite the past and the future, the dream, and the reality. Within this magical universe.
I would also like to name the Danish artist Nikoline Werdelin. I can keep on diving into her understated and satirical drawings again and again. She is great at observing and interpreting people and culture - she does it so sharply!
What has been the most challenging aspect of being a female artist?
For me, being an artist brings lots of joys but also challenges. It is a very personal and lonely job. I am the only employee in my company, which means I take the ups and downs – the practical and the creative job. However, neither of it is necessarily related to be a woman artist.
On the other hand, the way I handle my work, is more often driven by intuition and feelings then by rationality and planning – which I think is characteristic for many women.
My emotions and reflections are tools on my creative process, but, at the same time, I am constantly monitoring that my emotions don’t take over and control all aspects of my work.
What would you like people to notice in your artwork?
We all have stories to tell. Those stories don’t need to be extraordinary to become relevant; neither mainstream to fit in.
Only if we dare to look inside ourselves, we can be ready to meet others with openness and curiosity. I would like my work to reflect the known and the unknown in ourselves – and to bring us to a place where reality and fantasy merges and creates a new story.
Each Monday we bring you a fresh interview with a female artist.
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