Denmark Jan Esmann


1.Cycle of Life, 2004 Oil on Canvas 51x43 in. / 130x110 cm.

Four Clones Worshipping a Volcano, 2004 Oil on Canvas 51x73in. / 130x185 cm.

3.Insane Clone, 2005 Oil on Canvas 80x43 in. / 100x80 cm.

4.Three Clones Contemplating Death, 2005 Oil on Canvas 59x51 in. /150x130 cm.







Jan Esmann is a leading figure in Scandinavian new figurative art. He is connected with the Scandinavian group "Retrogarde", that brings together painters, poets and other arts that feel anguished that important qualities of art have faded into oblivion with modernism and postmodernism. Retrogarde is not a reactionary movement, but a movement that seeks to reinstigate man and the humane as the essence of art. Esmann is also a member of the international movement that sarcastically calls itself "Kitsch" in order to differentiate itself from the purely intellectual, conceptual and academic postmodern art, and to emphasize a belief that humane values are essential to art - just as in traditional kitsch. Along the same vein, Esmann is passionately into meditation and spirituality which may be seen as a metaphysical streak in his works. Esmann has exhibited throughout Scandinavia as well as in New York, San Franscisco and Philladelphia and his works are in major collections as far away as Jakarta.
When younger, Esmann searched fervently for someone who could teach him how to paint and tried various private teachers, but was never satisfied. Later he studied at The Royal Academy of Arts in Copenhagen, but left after three years because he no longer wanted to waste his time. He trained as an artrestorer in
order to get insight into the materials and craft of painting as well as aquire first hand knowledge of historical painting techniques. But Esmann learned to paint the hard way: by trial and error and hard work – plus a little talent. Simultaneously with studying at the Royal Academy he studied history of modern culture at Copenhagen University, which earned him an MA. He is a member of Mensa and a former member of The International Society of Philosophical Enquiry. He has published numerous important articles on modern culture in Danish academic publications.
Esmann has been a full time painter for two decades and lives and works in Copenhagen.