Konstnärer i Kalmar län

Maria Bang Espersen

Kommun: Emmaboda
Född: 1981
Tekniker: , , , , , ,

Mixed Media:

My work addresses current political issues either through analogies to historical events or through a discussion of architectural landscapes and their sedimented meanings. I am particularly concerned with the hierarchies established from fictionalized narratives. Through idealizations of reality, humans continuously create stories that are better than the real, and this imagined reality informs and shapes current political goals. This act effectively influences our relations to those not fitting into the mythical narrative and furthers a lack of empathy towards the Other – no matter the extent of fiction inherent in the first place. Nationalism, for instance, often is a memory of a utopia that never existed. It is a strategy to continue operating within the same hierarchies that have already existed for centuries.

I find criticality towards previously established norms vital, particularly when paired with the aim to understand others as well as the desire for collective improvements of today’s issues. As an artist, I believe that our actions have consequences for those around us and that we must therefore think carefully of the language we use as well as the stories we tell, as they contribute to defining the history that affects our future.


My work in glass is a constant quest for diversity and possibility and a reminder that things can be different from what they currently are. I work around the idea that all things are malleable, like glass, and that nothing can be permanently defined as right or wrong. My experimental works in glass are therefore not only a technique, but also a statement. One that states never to get caught up in restrictive norms or to obey established hierarchies. To rather be liberated from other’s restrictions and to transform them into positive forms. My work is a play with possibilities within material and the result often goes against classic rules on what is allowed in glass. Many of my works use cracked glass, either as an aesthetic comment or as a statement about change, development, and possibility.

Solo and Duo Exhibitions

2020 – The effect of some things Danish, Grønbechsgaard, DK (solo, upcoming)

2019 – Deviations, Formbar Glasverksted, Haugesund, Norway (solo)

2019 – WEEDS, Already Within Project Space, Houston, USA (solo)

2017 – National Costume, CalArts, CA, USA (solo)

2015 – I am living in a free country, D300, CalArts, CA, USA (solo)

2015 – What to breathe about, Gallery SiC!, BWA, Wroclaw, Poland (solo)

2015 – I Virkeligheden (eng; In Reality), Fortælle Galleriet, Holstebro, Denmark (solo)

2015 – Re Cover, S12, Bergen, Norway (with Max Syron)

2015 – Process is an Exhibition, S12, Bergen, Norway (with Max Syron)

2014 – Underneath it all, Bredgade Kunsthandel, Copenhagen, DK (Solo)

2013 – The Fine Line, Gallery Rasch, Bornholm, Denmark (with Caroline Pradal)

2013 – Interactions, Officinet, Copenhagen, Denmark (with Verena Schatz)

Victoria and Albert Museum, London, GB

Musee-atelier du Verre, Sars-Poteries, France

Nordenfjeldske Kunstindustri-Museum, Tronheim, Norway

Konstsammlungen der Veste Coburg, Germany

Statens Konstråd, Sweden

Glasmuseum Alter Hof Herding, Coesfeld Lette, Germany

Museum of American Glass, Wheaton Arts and Cultural Center, USA

Studio Collection of the Corning Museum of Glass, NY, USA

Collection of the City of Lommel, Belgium

Prizes and nominations

2020 – Nominated, Kogei Award, Toyama, Japan

2015 – 1st Prize Winner, KP-Prize, Aarhus, Denmark

Prize Winner, Talent Award of the Jutta Cuny-Franz Foundation of 2015, Germany

2014 – Prize Winner, Coburg Prize 2014, Jury’s Special Prize, Germany

2013 – Nominated, Talente 2013, Germany

Studio Glass of the year 2013, The Friends Society, Denmark

2012 – Prize Winner, International Glass Prize, Lommel, Belgium

Nominated, Stanislav Libensky Award, Czech Republic

Bronze Winner, The Danish Craft Prize, Denmark

1st Prize, Eco Arts Awards, USA

2011 – 2nd Prize, Scraplab Design Contest, Germany

Grants and scholarships

2020 Project Grant from The Swedish Arts Grants Committee

2019 – Support for Artists and Creative Individuals grant, Houston Arts Alliance

The Danish Arts Foundation

The Danish Arts Foundation, Project Grant

Nationalbankens Jubilæumsfond

15th June Foundation

2018 – The Eliza Prize

2017 – Beckett Foundation

2015 – Jens Ejnar and Johanne Larsen’s Grant in support of young artists

Augustinus Foundation

Direktør Ib Henriksens Foundation

Oticon Foundation

Nordea Foundation

Otto Bruuns Foundation

Aarhuus Stiftstidendes Fond, Travel grant

The Danish Arts Foundation, Work Grant

Grosserer L. F. Foghts Foundation

2014 – Den Hielmstierne-Rosencroneske Foundation

The Danish Arts Foundation, Work Grant

Annie and Otto Johs. Detlefs Grant

The Danish Craft Prize, Travel Grant

2013 – The Danish Art Foundation, Travel Grant

  1. B. Bishop and F. S. Merritt Scholarship, Haystack Mountain School of Craft

Danish Crafts Foundation

The Danish National Bank’s Anniversary Foundation of 1968

Bornholm’s Art Council

Ellen and Knud Dalhoff Larsens Foundation

Culture Week of Bornholm

Augustinus Foundation

2012 – Candace Haskell Scholarship, Haystack Mountain School of Craft

Den Hielmstierne-Rosencroneske Foundation

The Danish National Bank’s Anniversary Foundation of 1968

Augustinus Foundation

2011 – Otto Bruuns Foundation

Augustinus Foundation

Gross. L. F. Foghts Foundation

Education and Programs

2017-2019 – The Core Program, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, USA

2015-2017 – California Institute of the Arts, MFA, Art Program, California, USA

2009-2012 – The Royal Danish Academy of Design, Bornholm, Center of Glass, DK

2006-2009 – Kosta School of Glass, Kosta, SE

2005 – Engelsholm Højskole, Glass and Ceramics, Vejle, Denmark