Beijing Exhibition: Danish Shorelines – seen and captured by Janne Klerk
Janne Klerk: Danish Shorelines
Danish Cultural Center, 11 June – 20 August, 2017
Danish Shorelines is made possible through a generous support by S.C. Van Fonden.
A recent set of regulations issued by State Oceanic Administration (SOA) on The Protection and Development of Coastal Areas aims at establishing a scientific management structure on natural coastline protection, development and restoration.
The regulations constitute a premiere for China and are supported by the State Council.
The foremost objective is to ensure sure that at least 35 percent of Chinese mainland’s coastlines can remain unexploited by the end of 2020 whilst balancing the nation’s economic, social, ecological and military challenges. According to statistics from SOA, about 40 percent of such coastlines remain unused for the time being.
China has about 18.000 kilometers of coastline stretching from Bohai Bay in north to Tonkin Bay in south. Currently, more than half of the coastal area is used by the fishing industry, whereas urban infrastructure occupy about 20 percent. China Maritime Environmental Monitoring Center does not inform about the amount of coast reserved for military purposes, neither is it possible to obtain figures on areas that are restricted from public access for whichever reason.
In comparison, tiny Denmark has some 7.500 kilometers of coastline making the sea omnipresent everywhere. In fact, nowhere in the country you will find yourself farther away than 90 kilometers from a coast. This condition permeates Danish history, identity and culture and has shaped Denmark as a maritime nation with diverse, strong and sophisticated ways of using her access to the surrounding seas.
Still, the coastal areas are mostly accessible to the public hereby constituting a breathing space that is unparalleled. Here, we face the infinite universe and get a glimpse of the the vast skies opening up for the wide horizons ahead of us. More than anything, the coast is Denmark.
For many years, Janne Klerk has been photographing the Danish landscape. For this special exhibition focus is put on the landscapes surrounding the Danish shorelines – the open and wild North Sea, the shielded shores and inlets and the steep slopes of Møn and Stevns.
Klerk has captured these areas during different seasons; from the heavy winter skies over frosted seas in muted, earthy colors to the inlets and their mild surroundings dressed in green fields and quiet waters. The beauty of the landscapes is captured in the moment of morning light, evening mist or when floating clouds meets the sea in a mirroring reflection.
The Danish shorelines feature a rich diversity of landscapes, and the scale of the photos exhibited at Danish Cultural Center in Beijing means, as Janne Klerk put is: “It’s like being there yourself. You can almost walk into the picture; feeling you are standing at that exact spot – in the middle of the motive”.
Janne Klerk was born in 1953 and has worked as a photographer since 1977. She has a virtuoso eye and cuts to the bone in her representation of reality. A reality which she allows to speak directly through her, and pragmatically and unsentimentally passes on. Regardless of the motive, her photographs are characterized by a crystalline purity, seen with love and depth. She is a truth-seeking photographer and a picture-seeking poet.
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