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Stronger than life -

The Sculptor Astrid Noack 1888-1954

From March 11 to May 31, 2009

In the spring of 2009 Thorvaldsens Museum mounted a retrospective exhibition of the most important works by the sculptor Astrid Noack.

Astrid Noack is a loner in Danish art. During the years from 1925 to her far too early death in 1954 she created a series of unique sculptures in which she at one and the same time expressed fundamental humanity and the innermost being of sculpture. Her sculptures are timeless and draw their inspiration from contemporary French art as well as that of Egypt, Greece and Rome.

Stronger than Life

Astrid Noack’s works derive from an intense relationship to life and art and an unwavering belief in the importance of art. Her interest is mainly focused on the human figure – primarily children and women. Her figures often adopt quite simple postures: standing, sitting or kneeling.

The immediate impression is static and frontal, but a closer examination reveals that the individual parts of the body are imperceptibly turned in such a way as to provide it with an inner tension and a presence that are quite unique.

If one single work with these qualities is to be pointed out, it must be the statue of Anna Ancher, which was created for Skagens Museum at the end of the 1930s and is today considered to be Astrid Noack’s most important work.

Another work that deserves special mention is Standing Woman from 1939-45, which was included in the Cultural Canon of the Ministry of Culture as one of the most important Danish works of art over the ages – incidentally together with Thorvaldsen’s Jason with the Golden Fleece.

Astrid Noack in Thorvaldsens Museum

The Astrid Noack exhibition was the first retrospective exhibition of a sculptor’s work ever mounted in Thorvaldsens Museum.

The exhibition was arranged by curator William Gelius and was designed in collaboration with Holstebro Kunstmuseum.

The catalogue for the exhibition was published with support from Toyota-Fonden and Højesteretssagfører C.L. Davids Legat for Slægt og Venner.

Astrid Noack: Anna Ancher-skulpturen, 1937-39. Skabt til Skagens Museums have, tilhører Statens Museum for Kunst. Foto: Ole Bjørn Petersen Astrid Noack: The statue of Anna Ancher, 1937-39. Statens Museum for Kunst.

Astrid Noack: Stående kvinde, 1937-38. Tilhører Gteborgs Konstmuseum. Foto: Ole Bjørn Petersen Astrid Noack: Standing Woman, 1939-45.
Göteborgs Konstmuseum.

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