Article Number: 12787
Hard Cover, English, Thread Stitching, 287 Pages, 2017
Asger Jorn, Bente Magnus, Gérard Franceschi

Bird, Beast and Man in Nordic Iron Age Art

€ 182.50

Nordic Iron Age Art has survived in the precious metals gold, silver and bronze in the form of jewellery, brooches, weapon accessories and other utility objects. In the first centuries of our time, art was dominated by the inspiration from Roman and Classical art,

which was known from imported works, but in the 4th-5th Century an independent, highly original artistic development began in the North. Nordic art from this period departs radically from the traditions of antiquity. It is not monumental, but intimate and narrative, with many details that can hardly be perceived with the naked eye.

The predominant motifs became Ornaments and animals that were interlaced with masks and human figures in combinations that are almost indecipherable for us today, and these were gradually superseded by purely plantlike Ornaments.This long tradition continues in Nordic art all the way into the Christian era, when it is found in the woodcarvings of the Norwegian stave churches.

Asger Jörn and the French photographer Gerard Franceschi were permitted to take photographs in the rieh collections of the Nordic museums, and thus created a unified depiction of the rieh, disturbing pictorial world of the period. In his selection and his juxtapositions Asger Jörn interpreted the many objects with a modern artist's point of view and intuition, but at the same time he saw them as elements in the unbroken Scandinavian tradition that he wanted to show in his large series of books. Gerard Franceschi's Photographie mastery lets the often very small objects appear in all their monumentality, and in the play of light and darkness he evokes the forces expressed by the Nordic art from this era.

In the two volumes on art in the Nordic Iron Age that Jörn was able to compose, the Norwegian archaeologist Bente Magnus describes the historical and social conditions that prevailed in the period, and attempts to identify the myths and the content of the art of this remote time.brought so close to us by Jorn's perspective.