Exactly one year ago, THE BACKROOM at NBB GALLERY hosted the exhibition "Conflicted Misfits of the Next Apocalypse" by Laust Højgaard, unveiling a glimpse into the artist's complex and visionary universe. Now, as the journey continues, we sat down with Laust Højgaard to unravel the evolution of his art, the symbolism behind his latest exhibition titled "Plutonium Pompeii" and the profound influences that shape his unique artistic style.
In June 2022 we showed your exhibition Conflicted Misfits of the Next Apocalypse at the NBB BACKROOM. How has your journey continued since then? And what do you think is the main difference from your art a year ago?
The buzz definitely increased. Also the characters in my paintings have grown bigger and more brutal. But at the same time also more fragile, I think. Heavier and deeper. I also expanded the universe to three dimensions with bronze sculptures inspired by some of the work from “Conflicted Misfits of the Next Apocalypse”.
You usually choose the titles of your exhibitions yourself. What does the title of your solo exhibition at NBB “Plutonium Pompeii” stand for?
I like to think that the title “Plutonium Pompeii” sets the scene of an apocalyptic clash between modern society and ancient catastrophe. It’s a doomsday scenario with radiated mythical humans and creatures of rock and flesh that are symbolically stuck in their own body. They are strong and forceful sculptures but at the same time they are fragile and sensitive living beings.
You seem to be interested in jewelry, most of your characters have some sort of a chain on their neck or rings. What is it that attracts you to these elements?
Chains and straps can be something you wear for aesthetics reasons but also something you use for restraining yourself. In my work they are often used to solve both tasks. I like to use jewelry, chains etc. as organic elements that blend in with the character as a natural part of their appearance to enhance their personality.
What role does music play in your daily work? Do you have a current favorite album or playlist?
I tend to listen to the same things over and over again for longer periods when I work. It is not necessarily certain genres or themes that attracts me, but the energy or the universe it creates in some way. Lately my favorite albums have been Daft Punk’s “Random Access Memories (10th Anniversary Edition)”, Arcade Fire’s “Neon Bible” and Kendrick Lamar’s “Mr. Morale and The Big Steppers”