Artist Collaboration
Malene Lilleheim

To accompany the release of our book and the launch of "POSTHUME", we are delighted to introduce an exceptional partnership that flawlessly merges the visionary artistry of Malene Lilleheim, with her unique approach of merging the human form with natural landscapes through photography.

Malene Lilleheim embarks on a creative exploration, and narrative. Lilleheim's work transcends conventional boundaries, captivating viewers with her distinct style and ability to evoke profound connections.

Tell us a little bit about your work, process and focus

While I use landscapes to indicate a sense of time, I mainly use the human body as a storytelling object to recreate fragments of the past. When I work, I usually follow different key words that float around in my mind. I rarely work by a direct plan or through sketches; my focus tends to rely on hunches alone, foreseen movements, parts of skin and bones that trigger glimpses of suppressed past; details in nature that stand out.

My focus is to create illusions of reality, elements of senses, based on the premises of the beholder, using my own perception as a primer, without limiting the work to a person, time or a place.

What has been your biggest accomplishment – and your biggest failure?

When thinking about accomplishments, I find it hard to come up with a proper answer. I rarely get to that point where I feel my work deserves to be labeled as finished. Every image I capture feels like just another step on the way towards the impossible perfection that defines human beings. Any stop along this way will represent a fantastic accomplishment, as well as a disappointing failure that will force to keep on struggling.

Where do you find your passion?

I was once asked to describe one significant moment based on pure happiness, without any distractions or conflicting elements. When I let my mind go, guided by that thought of undiluted joy, I woke up in the steep, ragged mountains of Stryn on a rainy day, made even worse (or better) by a thick fog clinging to the ­mountain sides above a small lake covered in ice and snow. Nature has a clarifying impact on my ability to think and produce, the view alone initiates processes. The presence provokes a sense of being alive.


Creatively, what impact does the Nordic heritage have on your work and aesthetic?

The Nordic archetypes, inherited through countless generations of humans fighting for survival in surroundings as physically ­challenging as they are breathtakingly beautiful, are the ­inevitable building blocks of my creative thought processes. The bare ­essence of this heritage could be expressed through the ­following three words: cold, unpolished rawness. The visual sterility of winter, ­movements induced by small changes in light and wind, creating volatile shapes that can only be captured through laying ones soul bare.

What is your best memory of scent?

The cellar beneath an old house where a few generations of my fatherly ancestors has struggled through life, consists of low-ceilinged rooms built of stone and concrete, filled with an indescribable mix of pure rubbish and stored necessities. The earthy undefinable scent ofraw timelessness, combined with a contrasting hint of claustrophobia, has forever stuck to my brain.

  • SON VENIN and MALENE LILLEHEIM Hands for the sky
  • SON VENIN and MALENE LILLEHEIM Cloudy forest

Describe who in the world smell best to you?
(who is it and what does he/she smell like?)

The minute I held my new born daughter in my arms, her smell became an integral part of my being. The essence of that smell will always define my little girl, even though different ages, ­preferences and situations will attempt to cloud my senses. Trying to explain that certain smell, will be as impossible to me as it will be unfair to her.

How do you go along with making artwork for perfume?

I’m intrigued by surfaces, whether it’s skin or the different ­surfaces of nature. First of all by the shapes and textures that can be enhanced or altered through use of artificial or natural light, but also by opening up for personal interpretations of the scents that might have been part of the scene. If my pictures are able to trigger smells, I know I’m on the right way.

  • SON VENIN and MALENE LILLEHEIM Portrait of the artist

Check out Malene's fantastic photos at @malenelilleheim