These Handcrafted Collages Are Hopelessly Lost in Thought
Antique portrait subjects reveal their inner thoughts in øjeRum’s evocative layered works.
All images courtesy the artist
An untrained artist from Copenhagen shows off a deftness with tone and mood combining archival images and scenes from nature. The artist, who goes by øjeRum on his Instagram, weaves together antique portraits and classic sculptures with fantastical settings, imbuing each human subject with a layer of depth. Added elements of natural wonder such as starry skies, spooky woods, and breath-taking valleys expand each collage into strategic patterns.
A dark-haired woman standing within a lavish palace hall sprouts a swath of galactic sky from her crown, like the visual product of an active day-dreaming life. Another man, dressed in religious garb, stares out, his head wrapped in a thick landscape scene of a smoking marshland. Two common themes that weave through the øjeRum's works are silence and natural landscapes, which even a casual viewer can spot instantly.
øejRum, who uses only old magazines and newspaper clippings in his compositions, is a fan of analog art. Not one to engage with digital tools, he sees the discoloration and wear-and-tear of outdated pieces of media as an asset to be celebrated, not ushered into oblivion. Speaking with Creators about the underlying motivations in his art, øjeRum talks about his interest in forming a novel emotional sensation and drawing on philosophical tenets.
He says, "I'm constantly searching for a certain mood—a feeling of simply being present in the world, completely exposed to impressions, emotions, and memories. For lack of a better word it could perhaps be described as a mystical experience, one where the world is once more full of wonder, magic and freedom. However, this emotion is fragile and vulnerable and sometimes bears close resemblance to nostalgia and melancholy."
He continues, "I've studied philosophy and the French philosopher Emmanuel Levinas in particular has had a huge impact on my sensibility and the way I approach art. I'd like to mention his writings about what he refers to as the 'il y a'. A sort of anonymous being or the most basic way of simply being present. The 'il y a' or the 'there is' is the best reference I can think of to what I'm trying to funnel."