Times are hard for cartoon characters in the eyes of artist Søren Behncke. Former family favourites such as Yogi Bear and Donald Duck, faced with dwindling popularity in the post Simpsons, meta-humour world, have taken to selling themselves in the park in his pastiche of Picasso’s Les Animaux dʼAvignon. Poor Winnie the Pooh. No money, no honey.
That’s just one example of Behncke’s offbeat examination of our relationship with nature in his latest exhibition at the V1 Gallery, Copenhagen. Opening with a cardboard forest at the entrance, in Stepmother Nature the Dane leads us through his somewhat troubled take on the difference between our romanticized view of the animal kingdom and its environment, and how we really treat it. Mixing an informal, almost doodle-like technique with moments of painterly skill, he uses cartoon and pop culture alongside and within recreations of more historically weighty tableaux to express his feelings in a manner which is never preachy, while still being pointed. The exhibition runs from 6th – 27th April.