reviews

Albert Mertz

Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art

In contradiction to its title, “Duer ikke . . . Næste!” (No Good . . . Next!), this exhibition of works from the estate of Albert Mertz (1920–1990) stands out as the local show of the year. It was all there, or seemed to be: Respecting Mertz’s regard for process over the individual object, the curators—art historian Karin Hindsbo (the director of the nonprofit Den Frie Udstillingsbygning) and artist Jørgen Michaelsen—defied curatorial polish with a Dadaist hanging of collages, paintings, and objects that spread anarchically through the gallery and included notebooks as well as films and sound works. Even if not presented as a retrospective, the show had the authority of a museum exhibition, revealing the essence of Mertz’s practice.

Mertz’s point of departure was pictorial, and he arrived at a provocatively simple form of expression: concrete painting with an edgy trashiness, embodied in

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