Jo Bentdal, The Law of the Instrument

5 - 14 April 2014

Shoot Gallery is pleased to present The Law of the Instruments, new work by Jo Bentdal

Artist Talk
Saturday 14 April, 13:00 -14:00
Jo Bentdal & Lars Eton

Exhibition period:
5 - 14 April 2018

Exhibition hours:
Thursday, Friday, Saturday 12:00 - 17:00
Also open by appointment

The Law of the Instrument is a sales exhibition 
Please E-mail us for pricelist at

"I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if
it were a nail.», Abraham Maslow, 1966
This is a series of photographic stil lifes, images of simple objects found in the artists house. They are colorful and seductive, but at the same time a bit hard to read.
What do we see? Hammer that floats? A jack hovering in empty space?
The shapes are clear and simple, but there are also detailed tactile textures.
Should we understand the images, or just feel them?
Bentdal hopes to makes think about how we think. The content and the titles of the images gives room for both analytical and intuitive reactions.
The subject matter Jo Bentdal aims to explore is the notion that human beings as a species has a powerful tool that has ensured our dominance on the planet: our analytical brain (a large neocortex). A tool that has been instrumental in the development of our culture and technology that ensures our comfort as well as our proliferation as a species. The fact that our genes, like all genes, are selfish - has led us to think of our own species as something extraordinary. Our success utilizing our evolutionary merit, our analytical capabilities, has made us view the analytical part of the brain as the best tool for almost all purposes. Our preferred tool, homo sapiens´ "mazlovian hammer» is our ability to make tools - to develop sosial structures and technology. But even human analytical capacity is limited, and other species has other merits. A synergy is essential. In our time,
the viability of this synergy is determined by us. 
Maybe the time has come to stop considering our main strenght as something unconditionally positive for the big picture, but at the same time hope it can also be used to limit our negative impact on life on earth.


Jo Bentdal (1968) is a Norwegian artist living in Oslo. He is an educated physicist at NTH, and worked until 2010 as a strategic advisor for business in organizational development, digital media, design and brand strategy, before dedicating himself to his full-time art photography career.
With success at the autumn exhibition at Kunstnernes Hus in 2015, the purchase of Strays Foundation, participation at the autumn exhibition in Copenhagen 2015, exhibitions at Shoot Gallery in Oslo, the acquisition of DNB's art collection and the sale of a presentation on the art photography fair AIPAD in New York in 2017, Jo Bentdal has quickly established himself as an art photographer it is worth keeping track of.
Selected exhibitions
Common Sensibility, studio exhibition, Oslo 2015
The Norwegian National Annual Art Exhibition, Oslo Exhibition *
The Danish Artists Autumn Exhibition, Copenhagen 2015 *
Common Sensibility, Shoot Gallery, Solo exhibition, Oslo 2016
Nordic Light International Festival of Photography 2016
Interfaces, Shoot Gallery, 2 week event, Oslo 2017
Aipad, Assosiation of International Photography Art Dealers, Art Fair NYC
The exhibition "The Law of the Instrument" is Jo Bentdal's third exhibition at Shoot Gallery