Kunsten Museum of Modern Art Aalborg

Kong Christians Allé 50
9000 Aalborg

Phone: +45 99 82 41 00
CVR: 47 21 82 68


Danske Bank

Regnr.: 4368 Kontonr.: 13534926


Shara Hughes – Right This Way

Apr 13th 2023, 8:30am

Kunsten Museum of Modern Art Aalborg is proud to announce its upcoming solo exhibition by one of today’s leading American painters, Shara Hughes. The exhibition will present over 30 new and recent works completed between 2016 and 2023, including large-scale paintings and works on paper.

Shara Hughes’ works are at once surreal and abstract, inviting and alarming, beautiful and scary. Their bold, clashing colours and shifting perspectives manifest into immersive and dream-like landscapes. Profoundly personal, and rich in memories and real-life experiences, her “invented landscapes,” as she calls them, depict neither true-to-life landscapes nor the imagined. Instead, they invite us in as portals to our own experiences and psychological discovery.


Despite the seemingly familiar framing of landscape motifs, her works encourage us to look beyond what we think we see, or to “re-see,” as Hughes puts it. Nature appears between form and formlessness. It is clear that colour dominates—liberated in every work, gesture, and form. Though narrative is left behind, titles add an additional layer to Hughes’ works—Healthy Support System (2022), Broke (2022) and Dark Times (2023) —and in turn articulate something discernible, but without giving it all away. In our contemporary world, in which answers (we may presume) are readily available, her visual conundrums are utterly refreshing—paradoxically offering the viewer both a puzzle and a path.


After a short residency in Denmark in 2022 to create new works for this exhibition, Hughes remarked how she became drawn to the long horizon line, where the sea touches the sky, and how it changes constantly throughout the day. She said, “…there’s always something to learn about the passing of time and what that does to anything living, whether it’s mentally or physically.” Hughes later added, “All of the changing shapes and colours I saw in Denmark repeat themselves in the paintings and drawings.”


This exhibition is supported by private collections, Pilar Corrias, London, Galerie Eva Presenhuber and David Kordansky Gallery.

Kunsten thanks Augustinus Foundation, Obel Foundation and Beckett Foundation for generous support.


About the Catalogue

The exhibition and catalogue are produced in collaboration with Pilar Corrias, London, Galerie Eva Presenhuber and David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles.


Contribution to the catalogue includes two articles by author and curator Alyce Mahon, Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art History and a Fellow of Trinity College at the University of Cambridge, and curator and critic, Daniel Birnbaum, director and curator of Acute Art, London. The articles are accompanied by an interview between Shara Hughes and Mathias Ussing Seeberg, Curator at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark.

Shara Hughes is represented by Pilar Corrias, London; Galerie Eva Presenhuber and David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles.

About Shara Hughes

Shara Hughes (b. 1981) lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. She earned a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and later attended the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture. Her works have been included in numerous group exhibitions as well as solo shows in China, France, Switzerland, UK and USA. Her work is also represented in museum collections including the Dallas Museum of Art, Texas; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk; the Si Shang Art Museum, Beijing; the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington; and the Whitney Museum of Art, New York.

About Kunsten

Designed by the world-famous Finnish architect Alvar Aalto, assisted by Elissa Aalto and Jean-Jacques Baruël, Kunsten Museum of Modern Art Aalborg was inaugurated in 1972. The museum houses a unique collection comprising over 4000 works by Danish and international artists. It hosts up to 10 exhibitions yearly of modern and contemporary art, as well as events, lectures, film screenings, concerts, family workshops, guided tours, and other activities.