Born Anders Carl Nielsen, the Danish artist Anders Hune changed his name after an inspiring trip to the village of Hune in the northern reaches of Denmark to paint its wilds and its wonders. His son would remark that it ‘probably came naturally to him to take his name after the area and the landscape he had come to appreciate very much.’ Hune was a landscape artist so enamoured with the natural world around him he made it a part of his identity.
Hune received artistic instruction from the Technical School in Aarhus, however, it seems that he was a primarily self-taught painter. After his studies, he would take off on travels around Europe, deriving inspiration for his work. He would also meet his future wife in Germany, Antonie Louise Hedvig Koch, who would also paint alongside him.
After their marriage, the couple returned to Denmark and continued to travel and move around regularly. These travels proved hugely influential to Hune’s artistic tendencies. He began to depict the varying state of Denmark’s wildlife and countryside.
Hune’s works are infused with an emotive naturalism very much in tune to developments in Danish art at this time. Since the beginning of the 19th century, Danish artists had been determined to capture their homeland in a way that celebrated its beauty as well as tinging it with a romantic edge which elevated the national identity of their country.
However, a more authentic naturalism had begun to dwarf this romanticism in favour of depictions of Denmark which were based on nature first and foremost and presented an honest view of the lives of its citizens. Artists such as L.A. Ring were presenting a social realism in their works, with unromanticised views of farm labourers. Anna Ancher (1859-1935) enjoyed depicting the everyday life of Denmark’s people, nestled within brightly coloured, impressionistically inspired views of the Danish landscape.
The influence of these artists is clear in Hune’s work. He brings to his paintings an authentic edge. The transcendent quality of nature is captured in quick brushstrokes and clever diffusions of light. Sunlight shimmers across the water’s surface, a bright chrysalis of light in the background, whilst in the foreground the figures are dulled in colour, covered by cloud. Like Ancher and Ring, Hune focuses on everyday subjects. Farm labourers toiling at the harvest, fishermen congregating to battle rough waves to capture their catch. With his slashing brush and realistic use of colour, Hune conveys the rough life of these people, the sea foam soaking into their clothes, the hunch of their backs as they endure their gruelling work.
With nature as his guide, it is unsurprising that such an artist as Hune would change his name to quite literally embody the landscapes he was depicting. Regularly exhibiting in his homeland, Hune was also an adaptive and experimental artist. He worked on installations for interiors, as well as abstract sculptures, alongside his landscape paintings. In 1962, he converted an area of his home into an exhibition space for his and his wife’s work. The collection has since been moved and is now in the Danish public collections.
Hune was also a successful writer, publishing a novel based on his artistic life in the Blokhus, as well as having articles published in Danish newspapers. Clearly, Hune was an active and curious artist, whose artistic tendencies seeped into all aspects of his life. He participated in the development of Danish art, and was well-celebrated. In his time, Danish newspapers called his art ‘timeless.’
Born in Viby, Aarhus, Denmark.
Travelled to Norway.
Travelled to Germany.
Married Antonie Louise Hedvig Koch.
Changed his painterly name to ‘Anders Hune.’
Travelled to Paris, France.
Exhibited at the Charlottenborg Spring Exhibition.
Published Novel ‘People around Strandgaarden.’
Died in Manchester, Britain. Buried in Hune Graveyard, Denmark.