Between Plants and People

A peek inside the world of artist Rune Bosse 

Rune Bosse is present. Not in a Marina Abramovich kind of way, sitting face to face with an audience in a carefully orchestrated performance. Rather, the Danish-German artist is present in the most original sense – in nature. A raw presence with no specific agenda. For him, it is more about raising questions than finding answers, more about exploring than taming. Rather than focusing on nature per se, Rune Bosse is preoccupied with nature as a language to explore the way we navigate in the world. One might call it ontology – or just – a vital curiosity about the nature of being.

Rune Bosse

25 minutes’ drive from Copenhagen, located in an old airbase in Værløse, you will find Rune Bosse’s studio. It is high-ceilinged and have windows welcoming the light that nurtures the plants that are placed all around the room. In groups, solitary, fresh, dried, bottled, big, small, above, below, left and right. You are never in doubt about Bosse’s field of interest, and you can tell that the plants are taken good care of. They are not restrained or trimmed; rather, they are given the ideal conditions to grow. Genuine attention. These plants bear witness of a caring artist.

Between Plants and People, Rune Bosse

Paying attention to the well-being of a plant is not a typical thing to do these days. We all originate from nature and yet, it has somehow become an add-on in many people’s lives. A source of material goods. An antipole to a digital landscape without roots. A place we turn to when we need to ‘recharge’ from a busy everyday life. We are in constant movement, just as nature – sprouting, unfolding, leaving traces, and decaying in an ongoing cycle. This process, not least the interconnection between man and nature, is crucial for Rune Bosse.

Rune Bosse in his workshop

Finding himself between plants and people, Rune Bosse’s practice revolves around the fact that we are all connected. Not in the sense of the ‘butterfly effect’, the concept that the flap of a butterfly’s wings on one side of the world can set off a chain of atmospheric events on the other side. More in the sense that the simplicity of nature holds the key to some of the most complex questions in our collective perception of life.

Rune Bosse's workshop

Rune Bosse does not believe that the answers are to be found in a book theorizing the evolution of humankind; neither does he seek to establish a common discourse to agree upon. He is simply trying to create a space for people to ask questions about and reflect on their own being through bodily perceptions of nature. As when he placed five fully functional doors in different environments in the city and the countryside for a period of four weeks, drawing attention to the relationship between an object’s location and its function. How does ones perception and memory shape ones experience? Or when he, in an ongoing project, digs a hole in the ground in one country, collects a bit of soil and fill that into a hole in the next country he travels to, as a literal and symbolic act regarding exchanges of lived life. It is not a matter of highlighting borders, on the contrary, it is about emphasizing an equally interconnectedness.

Enter. Exit., different locations, Denmark, 2010
Enter. Exit., different locations, Denmark, 2010. Courtesy of Rune Bosse
Enter. Exit., different locations, Denmark, 2010
Enter. Exit., different locations, Denmark, 2010. Courtesy of Rune Bosse

In ideas and through doing, Rune Bosse dissolves the borders between art and life. For him, they are deeply interwoven, a part of the same whole, as is nature. Every step he takes potentially leads him to new knowledge. This elementary experience of our natural surroundings drives him forward. From his childhood adventures between the forest and the beach on Southern Zealand in Denmark to his educational footprints at Olafur Eliasson’s Institut für Raumexperimente in Berlin and The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, along with all his travels around the world. Rune Bosse is a wanderer, moving through time and space with all his senses alert. Every place he visits arouses his awareness. From holes in the roads of Addis Ababa to the intimacy of his father’s house. Rather than being a mere observer, he interacts with the world. He is not afraid to touch, feel, grow, speak, move, connect. In his own words, he creates through embodied knowledge.

Tempus circularis Fagus sylvatica, 2015-16
Tempus circularis Fagus sylvatica, 2015-16. Tree, glass, metal, time. Photo: David Stjernholm
Tempus circularis Fagus sylvatica (detail), 2015-16
Tempus circularis Fagus sylvatica (detail), 2015-16. Tree, glass, metal, time. Photo: David Stjernholm

Rune Bosse finds himself in a constant exploration of time, growth, decay, and memory. From the observation of the green freshness of a blooming leaf in early spring to its brown fragility when it is about to fall from the tree, from becoming to perishing, and vice versa. In the piece Moments, he literally encapsulated moments in the form of plants, collected every day for a period of three months. The work consisted of 81 bottles, each with one bleached plant, representing a memory either to be remembered or to be forgotten.

Moments, installation view, FESTIVAL OF FUTURE NOW, Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, 2014
Moments, installation view, FESTIVAL OF FUTURE NOW, Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, 2014. Courtesy of Rune Bosse

As such, Rune Bosse bears a resemblance to a scientist, systematically and empirically exploring phenomena in nature. All at the same time, his practice reflects a poetic dimension expressing states of mind through art. Beyond any labels, but with one certain point of departure: the tangible world. For Rune Bosse, it is not about creating a gateway into a parallel world, offering a haven in the midst of the busy life of a world citizen in the 21th century. On the contrary, it is about something elementary: paying attention to the world right in front of us. The sky above. The soil below. The trees in between. Stop up, look closely and just be. Nature might have something important to tell you…

The Cucumber is a She, exhibition, Gallery FLOSKL, Copenhagen, Denmark, 2013
The Cucumber is a She, exhibition, Gallery FLOSKL, Copenhagen, Denmark, 2013. Courtesy of Rune Bosse
Rune Bosse

About Rune Bosse
Born in 1987. Lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark.

2014-2016 Det kongelige Danske Kunstakademi. Scool of time based media – prof. Gerard Byrne, Denmark
2011-2014 The Institut for Spatial Experiments. – prof. Olafur Eliasson, Universitet der Kunste, Berlin
2009-2011 Det kongelige Danske Kunstakademi, København

Kunsthal Gammel Strand, Copenhagen, Denmark

I have fallen in love with someone who hides inside you, solo show at four boxes gallery, Skive, Denmark

Reseach for Network
SMK fridays, statens museum for kunst, copenhagen, Denmark

Grøntorvet Valby, Copenhagen, Denmark

The Garden, trienale, Aros, Århus Denmark

Artzone Roskilde Festival, Denmark

In around and all in-between
art re-acts, at Code artfair, bella centeret, copenhagen, denmark

Future nows,
Hamburger bahnhof, Berlin Germany

Groupshow curated by Jens-Peter Brask at Galleri Jacob Bjørn, Århus, Denmark

Graduation show
Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, Denmark

Take Me (i’m yours)
Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, Denmark

CODE Art Fair, with gallery Jacob Bjorn Copenhagen, Denmark

2015 Selected shows
Entretempo kitchen gallery, Berlin, Germany

Studio Jeppe Hein, Berlin Germany

2014 Selected shows
Festival of Future Nows
Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany

Vitamin Creative Space, Guangzhou, China

2013 Selected shows
KE13 (kunstnernes efterårsudstilling) Den Frie, Copenhagen, Denmark

Accidental Accomplishment
Institut für Raumexperimente, Berlin, Germany

The Cucumber is a She
Gallery FLOSKL, Copenhagen, Denmark

2012 Selected shows
Grosses Feld
Addis Abeba, Ethiopia

UNDERVÆRKER – Mesterværker fra danske privatsamlinger Kunsten, Aalborg, Denmark

Learn more about Rune Bosse
Dry Magazine: Studio Visit – Rune Bosse
I DO ART Agency: Video with Rune Bosse & Thinking Hand
The Undergang Armchair: Part Of The World Feat. Rune Bosse

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