Culture Round-Up: Latest modification to Asger Jorn painting dismays museum, but would the artist himself approve?

In his series ‘Modifications’, which spanned the late 1950s and early 60s, Danish Situationist artist Asger Jorn would buy kitschy paintings from flea markets and add his own graffiti: abstract or grotesque drawings, sometimes even added beards or mustaches, along with scribbled text.

At the time, it was perceived to be a criticism of the avant-garde movement that he was often associated with – most notably with the Cobra international movement.

So perhaps he would have some sympathy with the 44-year-old artist who made an addition to one of his works at Museum Jorn in Silkeborg.

The difference, of course, is that Jorn made alterations to crap he found in markets, while his 1959 painting, ‘Den ururoligende ælling’ (the disturbing duckling), although still arguably crap, is worth millions of kroner. Or at least it was.

Make that a double
The ‘artist’ in question, Ibi-Pippi Orup Hedegaard, signed her name and used copious amounts of glue to affix her likeness to the painting. She was arrested and then released after questioning. Charges are expected.

Upon her release she took to Facebook to write: “I have just visited the Jorn Museum in Silkeborg and made a double modification. I have mounted a picture of myself on top of the famous duckling. It is glued on. In addition, I have signed the work, as it is now an Ibi-Pippi work and not an Asger Jorn.”

It is believed that Orup, who recently underwent a legal gender reassignment to become a woman without making physical changes, was in the company of provocative artist Uwe Max Jensen at the time.

In a video, Jensen can be heard complaining that Ibi-Pippi did not show off his penis inside the museum.

Shaken and disturbed
Jacob Thage, the museum director at Museum Jorn, told DR that he is “quite shaken” by the incident. The glue will be very difficult to remove, he said, and it is doubtful the painting can be saved.

“It is one of the very well-known Jorn modifications. It is one of his five most important works, and it is an internationally renowned work. A national treasure,” Thage told DR. 

Peter Beck, a valuation manager from the auction house Bruun Rasmussen in Aarhus, confirms that  ‘Den ururoligende ælling’ is one of the most famous paintings of its kind – mainly because of its reference to HC Andersen – and that it would fetch more than a million kroner if sold.

Presumably as ‘co-artist’, Ibi-Pippi Orup will argue she should be entitled to a cut of the proceeds.

Malmö Opera’s Danish director fired following crude email comment
Michael Bojesen, the Danish director of Malmö Opera since 2017, has been fired in light of allegations of inappropriate behaviour. It is thought the incidents mainly occurred during his time as the head of the DR’s Girls’ Choir from 2001 to 2010. A recent DR report described the environment to be toxic during that time. Prior to that, he was a teacher at Sankt Annæ Gymnasium from 1984 to 2001, where Politiken alleged he had a relationship with a teenage student. The Malmö Opera board voted unanimously to relieve him of his duties. The final straw came last week when Ekstra Bladet published an email written by Bojesen whilst he was in charge of the Copenhagen Opera Festival in 2015 in which he made a sexist comment about a female opera singer’s breasts.

Denmark in top 20 for outdoor adventure hotspots
Denmark has placed 19th in a ranking of the world’s top outdoor adventure hotspots compiled by Superdry. The ranking assessed options for hiking, camping, surfing, rock climbing and kayaking, along with the number of national parks, and then calculated the number of outdoor adventure activities available per square mile. Denmark scored 67.3/100, but could not compete with the top five of Croatia, Israel, Hong Kong, the UK and Singapore. The top spots for each activity were Hong Kong (hiking), Australia (camping), Singapore (national parks and kayaking), Mauritius (general water sports and surfing), Malta (rock climbing) and France (skydiving).

Roskilde Festival completely sold out
Roskilde Festival has sold out completely. This leaves only one option to anyone still hopeful of attending concerts: become a volunteer! Shortly before midday on Monday, the festival sold its final remaining one-day ticket. “However, you can still apply to become a volunteer,” it later wrote on Facebook. In related news, the festival has partially banned the white plastic pavilions favoured by guests as good spots to shelter from the rain or extreme sunshine. The festival, in a bid to be as sustainable as possible, notes they are almost impossible to recycle, as they are made from a mix of plastic and other materials, and that guests often bring two because they are prone to splitting. It is therefore running a pilot scheme involving 4,500 guests this year who will be asked not to use the pavilions and to make sure they leave with everything they came with. This year’s festival runs from June 25 to July 3. The music segment lasts from June 29-July 2.

Netflix to raise standard and premium prices by 15 percent from June 4
Netflix is raising its prices in Denmark from June 4. The price of a Standard monthly subscription will rise from 99 to 114 kroner, and the cost of a Premium account from 129 to 149. They enable subscribers to enjoy two and four simultaneous streams. The Basic option, which permits just one stream, will continue to cost 79 kroner. Netflix has promised it will spend the additional funds on producing even better TV shows and films – “series such as ‘Kastanjemanden’ and films like ‘Against the Ice’”, which were both Danish productions. 

Sixth best free art gallery can be found in Copenhagen
Davids Samling on Kronprinsessegade has been ranked the sixth best free art gallery in Europe, according to a list compiled by The Knowledge Academy based on an analysis of TripAdvisor ratings. Also known as the David Collection, it was the only Danish entry in a ranking dominated by UK galleries. The Wallace Collection in London was number one, and British galleries filled five of the top ten places and well over half of the top 36.

Local production cancelled due to illness
The Why Not Theatre Company production of ‘Dick’, which was set to run for eight nights in May, has been postponed indefinitely due to illness. All tickets will be refunded.