SOLID VOIDS by Birgitte Due Madsen

SOLID VOIDS was created as a series of objects made by gypsum to be part of the exhibition Hotel Charlottenborg at Kunsthal Charlottenborg curated by the accomplished team behind Ark Journal during 3 Days of Design in Copenhagen. The result of this series is an intersection between art and design, a deep reflection of light and shadow with a certain level of abstraction – it invites your senses, through different geometrical forms and concave/convex shapes.

Investigation of form, light and shadow

Birgitte Due Madsen: My idea was to create a number of different forms sketched directly into the physical material making it three-dimensional, often per intuition, refining a low cultural material only a few people feel related to and hereby making the material relevant for the beholder. This carried a lot of intermediate results being the foundation of the exhibition. From extruding the circle as the only geometrical form with full rotation symmetry, into the three-dimensional cylinder, I processed the geometry into sculptural form by repeated investigation of interrelated concave and convex shapes coming into proportion in the exhibition by shifting light and shadow. By extracting the circular geometry in a continued investigation of form, I created a relational family connected by an ongoing level of abstraction, as a three-dimensional geometry in the intersection between art and design. Nothing needs to stand alone but is given its poetic shapes only in relation to one another.

SOLID VOIDS by Birgitte Due Madsen © Tina Hellberg

Objects from gypsum

Birgitte Due Madsen: SOLID VOIDS was a result of repeated experiments over time, making a series of objects from gypsum – a material I have specialized in and learned to love during my education as a ceramist and designer. Normally gypsum is a sketching material intermediating different processes before a work is made in marble or other solid materials. Instead, these were studies made on the premises of the material; since plaster is a fluid material I choose to work on the premises of this quality or capacity shaping in molds, carving, and casting geometrical forms by hand in an ongoing study of positive, negative and hollow spaces.

Touch and Interaction

Birgitte Due Madsen: Good skilled work invites you to interact with the subject. I feel very pleased to master a material that invites the following touch. Contact with gypsum as an exhibited material is rare since it is considered a sketching material and not the final expression. It surprises and attracts with its soft surface and deep reflections of light and shadow. I have always believed that high quality is a central value to beauty and skilled work. It affects you physically and you respond to the gesture with your body. It’s an almost sensual play with the laws of attraction. If you touch the object you get a more sensible and sophisticated understanding of the craftsmanship behind as well as the beauty of the surface. The work is only as good as the next touch perceives.

SOLID VOIDS by Birgitte Due Madsen © Henriette Schou


Birgitte Due Madsen: Everything has a history and is inscribed in historical contexts and classic disciplines that seem to offer so much more inspiration, matter, and content than a fleeting trend. Life itself is transient. We are all based on historical records. A rediscovery of this in our own time intensifies our presence. If one goes into the basic principles of geometry the possibilities of form are endless.

Interview with Birgitte due Madsen.

Featured Photo: Birgitte Due Madsen.