Created and Sold by Hans Martin Øien

Hans Martin Øien
The Journey of Fantasy Mutants | Public Sculptures by Hans Martin Øien | Stokke ungdomsskole in Stokke
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The Journey of Fantasy Mutants - Public Sculptures

Featured In Stokke ungdomsskole, Stokke, Norway

Item details

Outdoor sculpture for Stokke youth school.
Material: Light gray, red and yello granite.

Made 2017

Sculpture as an identity-creating hub with sitting and mingling opportunities.

For pupils in secondary school, toys are something that one would consider to be a laid-back stage. This sculpture is not a "toy sculpture" but a kind of memorial / monument of the significance of toys in one's life.

Sandefjord is a municipality where traveling by sea and in the air has been important in people's lives and work.
With this sculpture I have been concerned with travel and evolution from an expanded and poetic point of view. And I have wanted to create movement in water, air and space in a solid and durable material; granite.
The sculpture also contains a linear figure series that can create associations with the history of evolution. The series consists of a bird (parrot) monkey (similar to a Starwars wookie) and a Lego figure representing both man and a robot. It is the human / robot that controls the "vessel", the monkey is the crew and the parrot has the full overview.
One can get the impression that the "vessel" is breaking waves at sea, or is a flying blanket, or a fluttering sheet of paper.
My idea is that this work will create a number of associations and thoughts about man's journey through time and space, through knowledge and development. The sculpture group also says something about artificial intelligence and computer science. It has a design language comparable to data generated 3D modeling and data games with its pure geometry, while also referring to Lego toys and science fiction. The title "Fantasy Mutants" refers to how impressions from childhood's toys and film / gaming experiences blend with the things we surround ourselves with and activities we do as youth and the elderly. Childhood impressions become important elements of our own expression and identity as we grow older.

The Danang Sculpture Foundation in Vietnam was a Norwegian development cooperation project initiated by the sculptor Øyvin Storbækken.

In 2003, Øyvin received funding from Norad ( Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation) and the Norwegian Church Aid to build a stone carving workshop by the marble mountains outside the city of Da Nang.
It lasted until about 2008, during which time he trained 13 Vietnamese. The local stone cutters were trained in modeling, copying, enlargement and advanced stone carving in addition to English teaching.
Today, the workshop is self-run and do work for artists from many different countries.

Context & Credits

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Hans Martin Øien
Meet the Creator
Wescover creator since 2020
"Every time I start a new art project I want it to play an important role for its surroundings."

From 1993 until today I have mainly worked with sculpture, installation and art projects in public spaces, as well as producing exhibitions in public galleries and museums.
In collaboration with engineers and craftsmen, I have for the last 15 years realized large scale art projects in different materials.
I have worked with materials such as wood, stone, steel, plastic, aluminum, bronze, copper, concrete, etc.
After a retrospective exhibition at the Haugar Art Museum in 2004, one of my projects has been a series of sculptures called "Lego sculptures". These sculptures have since been exhibited in many places all over Norway, and have been used in public art projects. This was basically an idea where I wanted to use a well known design (Lego minifigure) and reusable materials to create "full size" sculptures with literary references and low material costs. At this point I had been fascinated by how my children played with Lego.
I observed that my boys could play with these characters as girls play with dolls. They could live their experiences and fantasies with the characters and process their life experiences. I decided to do something similar with my sculptures. I wanted to draw the Lego figure into the adult reality and make him big and visible picturing the adult world. This led to a number of exhibitions and eventually projects in the public realm.
It was a relief to be able to emphasize storytelling rather than designing exclusive objects that very few people were interested in. The materials had a marginal significance; my first "Lego sculptures" were built from used veneer plates. Later I have used more traditional sculptural materials such as bronze and stone to draw these figures into an art tradition and to be able to create lasting sculptures that can withstand the Norwegian outdoor climate.
My "Lego sculptures" often deal with adults problems, myths and prejudices, while at the same time referring to the traditional sculpture that appears as a representation of memory.