0039 Challenging the Precepts of Modernism: The Late Work of J. F. Willumsen
The late work of the Danish artist J. F. Willumsen (1863-1958) has until recently largely been marginalized and deemed kitsch, of poor quality and "odd". As opposed to the canonization of his earlier work, the period 1930-1958 has been difficult to "digest" and increasingly written off in Danish art history. This article takes a closer look at the late work, the reception of it by Willumsen's contemporaries and the artist's own claims about it. Furthermore, the article proposes to relate the status of the work to its resistance to notions that have become the precepts of modernism such as progression, irreversibility and defined "isms". The challenging of these notions is also found in the phenomenon of "Bad Painting" that has been presented and genealogized mainly through a number of exhibitions the last years. The article suggests to associate the work to this phenomenon.
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