Else Alfelt 1910-1974

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Else Alfelt (1910-1974), Danish painter married to COBRA artist Carl-Henning Pedersen, a marriage that became artistically significant.

Else Alfelt started painting as quite young, but never received an art education. Her painting style evolved towards the abstract. In 1936 Alfelt gained some contact with a group of Danish artists who worked with abstract art: Ejler Bille, Henry Heerup, Egill Jacobsen, Asger Jorn and Richard Mortensen. She was a member of the Autumn exhibitions of 1942 and later joined the avant-garde movement COBRA in 1948.

Alfelt has a very long exhibition list, from which mention is made of the Student Association and the “Scandinavians” in 1939, the tent exhibition, Bellevue 1941, the autumn exhibition 1942-46, the Cobra exhibition, Amsterdam 1949, the Salon des Surinépendants, Paris 1950, the Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh 1952-55- 58-61-64, Danish Abstract Art, Travel Exhibition in the USA in 1964 and Cobra Exhibitions in Rotterdam and Louisiana, 1966. Retrospective Exhibitions in the Kunstforeningen, Kbh. 1968 and Den Frie, Kbh. 1970 and several separate exhibitions and participation in joint exhibitions at home and abroad.

There is a lot of dreamy, crisp lyrical and eternal work that is varied, nuanced and deepened, but never really changes. The cosmic is maintained as a theme. The prominent features of her expression form are the use of a certain cubic schematic, the suns and moon’s spikes, the mountain-minds sharp triangles and a continuous use of very dominant head colors, mostly cool blue, green, yellow, which shines richly. Another distinctive feature of her paintings and watercolors is that she often leaves a small space between the filled color areas so that the bright background of the images appears like a spider of living and dazzling lines.