Shane Brox: Beauty in the Beast

To enter Shane Brox’ inner world is to be transported to the mental freedom of childhood where the aim is for curiosity, creativity, and trust to take center stage

Do you ever wonder what would come tumbling out from your true self if you really took down your defences? If you dared to shed your armour, stand emotionally naked and vulnerable and revert to a state of a pre-conditioned, non-judgmental and more authentic self? This is the on-going process that Shane Brox explores with his ethereal, soft sculptures created from recycled foam, acrylic paint and vintage textiles. 

Intuition as a method

To enter Shane Brox’s inner world is to be transported to the mental freedom of another dimension based on instinct, creativity and acceptance. Here, a strange and unpredictable universe opens up, surrounding the exhibition visitor in a sensual whole. In his works consisting of trippy, comical, creepy or just beautiful creatures, Brox draws on references from both surrealism and psychedelia to folkloric art and plant-like organisms. Sound, sight, touch and even vibration play their parts in this otherworld which is an emotional celebration of this inner universe. 

The use of the subconscious as a catalyst is a technique which has, among others, been used by French-American artist Louise Bourgeois but also by earlier surrealists such as Picasso and Miró in their search for the unspoiled. In his work, Brox consciously uses intuition as a method:  

“I feel most balanced and find inner peace when I allow myself to follow my artistic impulses without overthinking or falling into self-doubt - when I dare to just create without having to debate at length with myself whether it is good or not…  This is my biggest challenge: to just be the best version of myself that I can be in each moment, both the good and the bad ones, and to trust and surrender to the process.” 

The strength of the courage to be oneself

By refusing to give in to fear and by letting go of control, Brox sets the stage for emancipation – and that in this liberation one discovers new, genuine aspects of oneself. In this way, Beauty in the Beast is about the authentic as a value and represents aspects of being human, whether playful, scary, joyful, sinister, ugly or beautiful. The exhibition thus articulates the strength of the courage to be oneself despite conditional upbringing, other people’s expectations and one’s own ideas, even if it means daring to be honest and show one’s vulnerability. 

Join the Grand Opening on 7 September at 4-8 PM

When: 8 September 2023 - 21 January 2024

Where: Upper Gallery + Tower Gallery

About Shane Brox

Shane Brox (b. 1968) was born in Canada, grew up in Norway and currently lives and works in Copenhagen. He was educated from the Design School Kolding in 1991. After nine years in the fashion industry, he started his creative work aimed at children and their grown-ups in 2000.

This resulted in, among other things, the publication of numerous children's books as well as the development of Shanes Verden (“Shane’s World”), a series of programmes on DR Ramasjang (a children’s channel on the Danish Broadcasting Corporation). Most recently, Brox has exhibited at Christiansborg and Kronborg Castle.  

The nerve and driving force of his work have always been to inspire children and adults to trust and listen to their inner voice. Beauty in the Beast is Shane Brox's first solo exhibition at a major Danish art institution. 

David Stjernholm
Ditte Isager