A Quick Coffee Chat with Bente Christensen-Ernst

A Quick Coffee Chat with Bente Christensen-Ernst

Biography & Career

Who are your biggest influences?

It is probably America artist like Chuck Close and Andy Warhall, and naturally, the German artist Albrecht Dürer.

How have you developed your career?

I started on an art course in the late 70s. After moving to Ankara in 1981, I continued to paint and had two exhibitions there. Returning to Denmark in 1987, I joined censored exhibitions (or competitions) where I became known among  the good galleries in Denmark and became a member of the Society of Danish Artist under the Royal Academy. Subsequently I have had solo shows in Istanbul, New York, Damascus, Aleppo, Adana, Beirut, and Amman. I have been on art fairs and joint exhibitions several places in Europe. 

What memorable responses have you had to your work?

At a solo exhibition in Istanbul all my works were sold before the opening.

How has your practice change over time?

I have studios in both Copenhagen, Istanbul, and Antakya (Antioch). My stay in the Middle East has influenced me and my style.


What does your work aim to say?

My art is a testimony to what I see. 

How does your work comment on current social or political issues?

My art is not political, but I am critical to what I see. Therefore some of my paintings reflect negative aspects of the society (such as Childe Brides, hand grenades, the selfie phenomenon, and the gas masks). I am just a witness.

What’s your favorite art work of the ones you’ve created?

I guess it is the portrait of my husband with a fez (George Efendi) sold to Aida Cherfan in Beirut.

Anecdotes & Aspirations

What do you dislike about the art world?

The curator phenomenon and the jealousy of some artists.

What do you like about your work?

That I can work at three different places in the word.

Professionally, what’s your goal?

To do it ever better.

Learn more about Bente by exploring our past articles about her, or by delving in some of her art.

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