Who is Kristian von Hornsleth?

by Wolf-Günter Thiel, art historian and publisher, Berlin

Hornsleth’s works, whatever medium, are countercultural in every sense of the term, at once toying with, exploiting and criticizing popular culture through their defiant attitude to social conformity. Driven by the symbolic representation of his own name, Hornsleth’s work succeeds in engendering its own momentum whilst simultaneously questioning the nature of publicity and celebrity culture at large. Often described as a cross between Friedrich Nietzsche, Andy Warhol and Dr. House, one can always expect a certain playful or egotistical madness in Hornsleth’s work, refreshing and invigorating in its capacity to shock.

There seems to be at least two contradicting approaches in the work of Hornsleth. Firstly his confrontational navigation through contemporary culture built on his own philosophy which he calls Futilism, making one capable of using futility as such in a most constructive way.
Secondly his manic insisting of developing a symbolic representation of his own name, ‘Hornsleth’, emblazoned across countless works he's produced that now reach out all over  Denmark and around the world. The word is ‘Hornsleth’, questioning the beauty of manipulation in an often countercultural manner and further questioning if the publicity in itself is more important than the products it endorses, now spreading from branding Lamborghini's to sculptures, provocative photographs, and people themselves. Where does all this leave the contemporary person?

The Hornsleth Village Project Uganda saw every individual in a village change their name to Hornsleth, in a simple exchange for a pig or a goat, and outrage ensued. Headlines spread across the world, and questions about ethics arose, but you didn't hear the villagers complain? Or should we say
the Hornsleths? The Hornsleth Arms Investment Corporation drives questions home about the accepted face of capitalism, and the nature of human relations to safety versus cruelty and how commerce can spread the dilemma. Once the message is seen, it's not forgotten. The Deep Storage Project, is energizing a clarion call to mankind to try and save itself from itself, and utilizing art in a way that offers a potential chance to fight for the future of our species from today.


2012 "Painted Models", Fashion Week Sao Paulo", Kee Mod agency, November, info
2012 "Freak Night and Deep Storage Project", with Flaming Lips, Oklahoma, October, info
2012 "Deep Storage New York", White Box Manhattan, October, info
2012 "Super Panic Light Box Show", Platinum Lace, London, March, info
2012 "New Works", GG Gallery, London, May

2011 3rd Annual Christmas Show, 20th Century Theatre, Notting HIll, London
2011 "Great Love Will Come Again", Ralph Schriever Galerie, Cologne, Germany
2011 "Dead Porn Stars Litany", FB69 Gallery, Münster, Germany
2011 Amsterdam Art Fair / FB69 Gallery Münster Germany
2011 "Projects of Exploitation, Death and Eternity", GG Gallery, London
2011 "The Hornsleth Morgan", Milano Design Week
2010 "Lord Mayors Parade" London with Morgan car producers
2011 Playtime Gallery and Bar, London, 2 February
2009 Opening Party, Hornsleth Showroom Aarhus, 21. Aug
2009 "Deep Storage Project", Galerie de Grancy, Lausanne, Switzerland
2009 Langelands Efterskole Massacre Performance, 16. May

2009 Deep Storage Project, 798 Space, Beijing, China
2009 Deep storage Project, Stageback Gallery, Shanghai, China
2009 Deep storage Project, University of Guam, Guam, USA
2009 Deep Storage Project, BN24 Galerie, Hamburg, Germany
2009 Deep Storage Project, Bangkok, Soul Flower Gallery, Bangkok
2009 Fuck the Financial Crises, Galerie FB69, Münster, Germany
2008 New Works and Old Fears, A Fine Arts Gallery, Odense
2008 Hornsleth Arms Investment Corporation, Gallery Poulsen, Copenhagen
2006 The Hornsleth Village Project Uganda, photos and video, Pressen, Politiken, Copenhagen
2006 We have money than God, paintings, Solon Kaffi Galerie, Reykjavik
2006 My Collectors Are Richer Than Yours, paintings, Another Year in L.A. Gallery, Los Angeles
2006 Just Get Rich, paintings and sculptures, DDM Gallery, Shanghai
2005 The New Hornsleth Restaurant, Apropos Galerie, Cologne, book
2005 Horn$leth Hurt$ Cu€to, Valerie Cueto Galerie, Paris, catalogue
2004 Bored to Death in Switzerland, JF Galerie, Zürich
2004 The Viking Art Party, The Hands in Clay Gallery, Shanghai
2004 The 10 Hornsleth Lounge Parties, 10 different locations 2002 - 2004, Copenhagen
2003 Fuck My Brains Out, Knud Grothe Galerie, Copenhagen
2002 F.Y.A.L., Baumgartner Gallery, New York
2001 Versus, Center of Attention Gallery, with Tai Shani, London
2001 Promi Paranoia, Felix Leiter Gallery, Berlin
2001 My Collectors Are Richer Than Yours, Galerie Heitsch, Munich
2001 Fucking Liars and Timeless Constructions, JF Galerie, Zürich
2001 Rape Kill Steal Burn, Galerie Mirko Mayer, Cologne
2001 Rape Kill Steal Burn, Stalke Gallery, Copenhagen
2000 The Hornsleth Bucherer Jewelry Project, Moscow Art Fair, with Galerie Volker Diehl, Moscow
2000 The Hornsleth Bucherer Jewelry Project, Cobblestone Film Production GmbH, Hamburg
2000 Fuck You Art Lovers, Galerie Jörg Heitsch, Munich
1999 New Brandings, Stalke Gallery, Copenhagen
1998 Nice Paintings for Nice Homes, Paustian, Copenhagen, Catalogue
1998 Group 7, Stalke Gallery, Copenhagen
1997 Civilization Critiques, Stalke Gallery, Copenhagen, Catalogue
1997 Elaborated Copies From The Big Noise, 10 shows with Danish Art Associations, Catalogue
1996 Futilistic Intervention, architectural installation, European Cultural Capital Copenhagen '96
1995 The Hornsleth Death List, Sophienholm, Cobra Space, Copenhagen


2012 Price of Freedom, Imitate Modern, London, February
2009 Love, Rohde Contemporary, Copenhagen, Denmark
2009 Détournement, 53. Biennale, Venezia, Italia, Project program, Weblink
2009 Industrial Culture, the Globes, National Museum, Brede Værk, Denmark
2009 Stalke Up North, Copenhagen, ONE Copenhagen, Six Americans / Six Danes, curator: Dove Bradshaw; artists: Anastasi, Andre, Barry, Bradshaw, Kretschmer, Passehl, Dahlgaard, Ebbesen, Hornsleth, Jedig, Mertz, Recke;   ONE Copenhagen  on-line catalogue
2009 Play Along, Galleri Rumkammeraterne, Copenhagen
2008 Rebranding X-mas, Galleri Fedt, Copenhagen
2008 Mit der Nase in die Zukunft, FB69 Galerie, Münster
2008 Overkill, Wonderland Art Space, Copenhagen
2007 Unfair Trade, Landesmuseum Joanneum, Neue Galerie, with Gursky, Sierra a.o., Graz, Austria
2007 Curating Contest, La Hotel Louisine, with Galerie Olivier Robert, Paris
2007 Shanghai Art Fair, with 1918 Art Space, Shanghai
2007 Asia Europe Meditations, Posnan, Poland, Catalogue
2007 The Hornsleth Village Project, lecture July 1 at WSNHiD University, Posnan, Poland
2005 ARCO '05 Art Fair, Galerie Valerie Cueto, Madrid
2004 Bruxelles Art Fair, Galerie Valerie Cueto
2004 Lies, Lust, Art & Fashion, Podewil, Berlin
2003 Albisola, Italy, Attese, Ceramic Biennale #2
2002 Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, Deutsche Recycling, DKR, U-Bahn tunnel project, catalouge
2002 Genève, Musèe Ariana, Ceramics from The Ceramic Biennale, Albisola, Italy
2001 Cologne, Art Cologne with Galerie Mirko Mayer
2001 Cologne, BBK, Bundesverband Bildende Kunst Köln, Oktober
2001 The Happy Face of Globalisation, Attese Organizatione, Ceramic Biennale , Albisola, Italy
2001 Tirana Bienale, invited by Giancarlo Politi, the Flash Art editor, catalogue, Albania
2000 Art Forum Berlin with Galerie Mirko Mayer, Berlin
2000 Fouri Uso 2000, invited by the curator Helene Kontova of Flash Art, catalogue, Pescara, Italy
2000 Liste 2000, with Stalke Gallery, Basel
2000 Fun Fame and Fortune, Galerie Mirko Mayer, Cologne
1999 Art Forum, with Galerie Volker Diehl, Berlin
1999 Liste 99, The Young Art Fair, Stalke Gallery, Basel
1999 Art Frankfurt, with Stalke Gallery
1998 Stalke Gallery, The 10 year aniversary show, Copenhagen
1997 Stockholm Art fair, Stalke Gallery
1996 Copenhagen, Stalke Gallery, Status 3
1995 Vienna Architechture Festival, invited by Scott Ritter


2009 ILVA, Making love to 2 mill people, art prints on canvas
2008 Hornsleth on the Mobile, with iLoop Mobile Europe ApS, sms: 'hornsleth' to 1940
2008 TV DR2 Smagsdommerne, The Judges of Taste, 14. feb, a culture debate show
2007 Smagsdommerne, The Judges of Taste, culture debate show, TV DR2 Danmarks Radio
2007 Bestseller Denmark, Kill Me Fast, ten shows and performances in 'Selected' fashion shops
2007 The Ducati 1098 Project Kill Me Fast #1-10, painted and exhibited around Denmark
2007 Fair Trade for Max Havelaar, poster project, Denmark
2006 Smagsdommerne, The Judges of Taste, culture debate show, TV DR2 Danmarks Radio
2006 Hornsleth Village Project Uganda, 100 people added 'Hornsleth' to name for farm animals, link
2001 Saxobank Denmark, Chance Operation, an ongoing installation project


1988-94 MA, The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art, Architecture
1983-86 Geology studies, University of Copenhagen
1987-88 Copenhagen Business School


2008 Co founder of PP08 - Psycho Pop 2008, with Smike Käzner, Søren Dahlgaard, and others
1999 Co founder of PERMANENT VACATION, with Flash Art critic Wolf-Günter Thiel
1994 Founder of art group FSP, Futilistic Society Projects, Publishing, Sound
1990 Co founder of Juan Uno Etc. with artist Marco Evaristti and novellist Benn Q.Holm


1999 Four Futlistic Sound Images, by F.S.P. Group, Stengade 30 Concert House, Copenhagen, DVD
1998 Nice Music For Nice Homes, Sound works performed by FSP at Paustian House, Copenhagen
1998 The Sound of Futilism, Solo piano by Hornsleth, Broendby Music School, Copenhagen
1995 Mariage of Heaven and Hell, opera performance, Juan Uno Etc., Second Opera, Copenhagen
1995 Mariage of Heaven and Hell, opera performance, Juan Uno Etc., New Theatre, Horsens, DK


1999 Four Futlistic Sound Images, Live from Stengade Concert House, Copenhagen DVD 60 min
1998 Nice Music For Nice Homes, improvised sound work, by FSP, CD 63 min
1997 Fucking A Minor, Solo piano works by Kristian von Hornsleth, CD 70 min


2006 The Hornsleth Village Project Uganda, with H. Lundo, TV DR2
2003 Fuck You Art Lovers Live No.2 , a sex triangle mouning 'Hornsleth', 5 min
1999 Talks on Futilism, 45 min, The Danish Film Institute Workshop
1999 Fuck You Art Lovers Live No.1, a silevr dildo demonstration, 5 min
1996 Babylon96Copenhagen, S16 mm, 5 min, with Evaristti/Holm, The Danish Film Inst. Workshop
1996 The Finger Phenomena, S16 mm, 33 min, with Evaristti, The Danish Film Institue Workshop


2003 Fuck My Brains Out, 24 pages, Grothe Gallery Copenhagen
1998 Nice paintings for nice homes, Paustian 16 pages, Futilistic Society Publishing, Copenhagen
1997 The Futilistic Manifest, 120 pages, Futilistic Society Publishing, Copenhagen
1997 Civilization Critiques, 24 pages, Stalke Gallery, Futilistic Society Publishing, Copenhagen
1997 Elaborated copies from the big noise -paintings of futilism, 24 pages, Danish Art Unions
1993 Dø Vågnende Søvn, Die Awakenen sleep, 240 pages, with Evaritti/Holm, Juan Uno Etc. Publ.
1992 The Litany of Hate, Overgaden, Copenhagen, 24 pages, Juan Uno Etc Publ., Copenhagen
1991 The Urban Delirium, 98 pages, Juan Uno Etc Publishing


1998 The Danish State Art Foundation
1998 The Danish State Music Council
1998 Danida Traveling Grant
1997 L.F. Foughts Foundation
1997 The Danish State Art Foundation
1997 The Danish Film Institute, The Workshop
1996 Copenhagen Cultural Capital Foundation
1995 The Danish Film Institute, The Workshop
1995 The State Music Council