If I Had A Heart I Could Love You
by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

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If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

Show RCA 2011: Royal College of Art graduate Malene Hartmann Rasmussen created this ceramic installation evoking a surreal forest hut from a Brothers Grimm fairytale for her graduation show earlier this summer.

If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

Entitled If I Had A Heart I Could Love You, the installation features a stove at its centre that's filled with burning logs, which on closer inspection are shaped like human hearts.

If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

The wooden boards of the hut are nailed down but continue to grow, and a spiky kettle overflows with smoke on top of the stove.

If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

See all our stories about this year's Royal College of Art graduate show here and all our stories about ceramics here.

The information below is from Malene Hartmann Rasmussen:


In this project I work with how we perceive the world, twisting and changing the perception of the space to create an eerie surreal and otherworldly feeling. The setting is a wooden hut as we know it from the folk tales of Brothers Grimm. The viewer is intruding this reality-shifting dark place. It is a fake wooden hut, a piece of theater-like scenery made from drawn wood planks, the “Flintstones” aesthetic and Technicolor quality of the ceramics underlines the hyper real dreamlike feeling.

If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

In the hut there is a fireplace, the burning logs look like hearts, but the hearts look like real hearts and the branches sticking out of them resembles blood filled arteries and veins. The hut is in a forest or maybe the hut is the forest; the wooden planks are sprouting and coming to life, or maybe they were alive and someone is cutting them down? This uncanny and dark fairytale is fragmented, like in a crime story the clues are scattered around, the viewer is the detective trying to make sense of it all.

If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

I am working with mixed media sculpture, making and arranging multiple components into complex narrative sceneries, the dialogue between components and the way one's unconscious can direct the composition interests me. The intention is to impose personal feelings and stories onto container objects that traditionally have no feelings. Initially the viewer may, mistakenly, be drawn to my figures thinking them to be toys; however closer examination reveals their rather darker narrative. They invite you into an absurd and surreal world where things are not what they seem…

If I Had A Heart I Could Love You by Malene Hartmann Rasmussen

I want my work to look like a very skilled child could have made it, clumsy and elaborate at the same time. My intention is to create compositions that have an underlying story and mood. I hope the interpretation of my work isn't too fixed; my intent is to make it open for the viewer to filter their own references through, to make sense and contribute to the story themselves. My aim is to create a visual poetry based on my own personal story.

Size: height: 200 cm. width: 200 cm. depth: 130 cm.
Materials: ceramics, MDF, polyester fiber, pins, print, found object

  • http://www.clerkenwelldesignweek.com Louisa Pacifico

    I saw this installation and it's simply amazing. Every detail was absolutely perfect and I urge you to see it if she shows it again.

  • stopwatch

    embarrassing name. like reading out someones diary to their face.

  • coralie

    i would like to know why the title is a line from a fever ray song…

  • Dee

    I think this is beautiful. Love her attention to detail

  • xtiaan

    its kind of really lacking in concept, its like all those "kooky dark fairytale/ figures with big eyes and tentacles" type painters there's so many of these days.

    the exceution of the work itself is flawless though, great level of craftmanship

  • Japr

    coralie, maybe next exhibit's name will be ….if I had a voice I'd sing………..cheers