Mads Gamdrup: Renunciation
In a series of 16 spectacular, large-scale color photographs, Danish artist Mads Gamdrup explores the desert as a place of unexpected promise. For the project, titled Renunciation, he traveled to Egypt, Iceland, Morocco, and the United States to record empty landscapes that could serve as a “metaphor for renunciation of the unnecessary and the retention of essential hope.” Despite their geographical and geological differences, the deserts in Renunciation appear as analogous spaces. With his camera, Gamdrup transforms these sprawling, open landscapes into abstract visual forms that together reveal a universal narrative about moving from place to place. The silent scenes, stretched across the gallery as if they share a horizon line, seem to support philosopher Jean Baudrillard’s notion that “the unfolding of the desert is infinitely close to the timelessness of film.” From the far reaches of the globe, Gamdrup presents a vision of the earth that is sublime, eternal, and ready to be explored anew.