Elina Sarlin explores the boundaries between everyday realism and explosive color patterns in her oil paintings. She presents the triviality of the present with incredible precision, shrouded by abundant colors and shapes – a clear reference to pop art culture. The works often center on individuals in the middle of ordinary activities; vacuuming, unpacking groceries, eating breakfast – but they are elevated above everyday life because of their hypnotizing patterns and playful color schemes. The artist toys with the beholders expectations of realism and adds a distinctive magic to the ordinary. Sarlin is on the one hand a fresh breath of air and color added to the gallery’s collection, on the other a direct continuation of our common thread because of her figurative realism.
The artist describes her works as follows:
“Reality always manifests itself in the present moment in contradictory, foolish, banal, beautiful ways. My works display a world that is rich, abundant and colorful in its details – and a person in it living their everyday life, in their most ordinary, exposed. Every moment is defined by itself creating a new context to what is essential and what is irrelevant. The paintings flirt with the concepts of the trivial and meaningful, trying to break away from conventionality, rigid thinking and unnecessary severity.
Nature is strongly represented in the works: Sometimes as the main motif and in the foreground, but often also somewhat hidden, in the background, as a reference and conceptualized, filtered by human. My paintings reflect the complexity we have in our relationship with nature. They also ponder upon controllability and uncontrollability of nature, the nostalgic longing for connection and the question of authenticity.
The missing eyes of the people in the works also refer to another, hidden level: The inner world, the vulnerability and the confusion of the individual. The paintings explore the present-day dreams and raise questions about the individual’s responsibility and choices amongst the dog biscuits, macaroons and broken eggs. The works seek to reach the daily chaos of life, it´s bizarre perfection – the grace of everyday life.”
Stud. mag. Nordic language and litterature & Visual Culture, Anna Emilie Ravn