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Karl Bryhn

Karl Bryhn Biography

Karl Bryhn 42. from Molde, northwestern Norway. Currently living in Oslo. I moved here at 18 yrs old to go to art school in Oslo and absolutely hated it. I have some artist friends from those days but that is basically the best I can say about it. I am a self-taught, self-trained artist, semi-autodidact, I like that. Being responsible for my own education in whatever interests me. Anyway, I never looked back.

For a long time, Karl Bryhn was very interested in films and animation and considered it the most potent means of expression. But as Bryhn became older painting made a big return for him he realised almost every media around us is basically a moving image. Films, digital video, 3D, VR, AR are all exciting mediums but they also made him appreciate the unique quality of a painting more. It is singular, every copy or reproduction of it will fail to match it. At least so far, not knowing what to expect from future technologies. A painting has no end, It doesn´t change and yet it changes with the viewer. That longterm relationship between the viewer and a painting is unique. All those micro-moments with a piece of work, over longer periods of time, adds up to something really powerful. A painting might be a hard sell as something exciting in the current media jungle but for him, it is even more interesting now than ever precisely due to those qualities.

I feel it is important work to do“.

Painting as a medium has been declared dead many times even before I started art school and I´m sure it will be declared dead many times in the future.

Explaining Karl Bryhn and his paintings, In his work “A Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful” (1757) Edmund Burke distinguished between two rational categories; the beautiful and the sublime. The beautiful was only well-formed and an aesthetic pleasure. The sublime was wild and chaotic. Dangerous. It contained the germ of destruction and change. This work came about after the watershed between the neoclassical and romantic periods. Philosophers like Kant and Diderot picked up inspiration and power from here.

Roughly simplified, he suggested that the Sublime ignites a passion in the spectator who has his roots in fear and a death blend. The beautiful could not be limited to a documentable summary of aesthetic experience, but in the sublime one could find something that was irrational and fundamentally disordered and dangerous.

In the 20th century, this genre encountered magical realism, giving an almost photographically accurate description of reality, with details that were too unreal to be accepted as true. This should serve more purposes, but first and foremost it may be argued that one sought to illuminate the basic magical nature of reality. This contrasts with the hyperrealistic naturalism, where the world was regular and almost monistic.

karl Bryhn has been interested in stories since childhood. Bryhn knows what the Sublime is and he has been watching for a long time. But such modern painters point to the warning of the shapeless frenzy, the Choron Zone, the madness and the abyss, Karl Bryhn has a balanced elegance on the edge while outlining diligent and woven stories within his paintings

Here you will not find pictures. Here you can find stories in image form.

Nietzsche said that if you fight monsters you should be careful not to become a monster yourself. And if you stare into the abyss, remember that the abyss stares back.

Welcome to the abyss. Take off your shoes and stay for a while.

– Benjamin Eriksen


A link to Karl’s Tumblr account

Next Artist: Kate Garner

Karl BryhnNorway


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