Biography

The theme of blondes has re-occurred in Birgisson’s work for over a decade now, focusing on the question of politics of representation, addressed through the visual negotiations of blondes in our cultural environments. His work reaches from paintings via installation on site to photographs. What connects all the different media is the issue of how identities are made and shaped, distributed and retold, rooted and rebounded. The work underlines the actively politicized versions of what is beautiful and how that is used and abused – from any sides of the equation, wishes, wants and fears.

Birgir Snaebjorn Birgisson / b. 1966, lives & works in Reykjavik, Iceland

birgirsb@internet.is / birgirsnaebjorn.com / gallerysign.com

 

Education: École des Arts Décoratifs, Strasbourg, France, 1991–1993, Multimedia / The Icelandic College of Art and Crafts, 1986–1989 / Akureyri College of Art, Iceland, 1985–1986

 

Solo Exhibitions: Corridor, Reykjavik Iceland, “Justice”, Oct.–Nov. 2017 / Hafnarborg Museum, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland, “Hope”, Oct.–Nov. 2016 / Corridor, Reykjavik, Iceland, “My name is Democracy” April–May 2015 / Helsinki Contemporary, Finland, “Ladies, Beautiful Ladies”, Nov.–Dec. 2014 / ASI Art Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Ladies, Beautiful Ladies”, Sept.–Oct. 2014 / Gallery Boreas, “Bridge Art Fair”, (solo presentation), Miami, USA, Dec. 2009 / Gallery Turpentine, “Humility”, Feb–March 2008 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Kjarvalsstadir, Iceland, “Blonde Miss World 1951–”, Nov. 2007–Jan. 2008 / Gallery Boreas, Pittsfield, Massachusetts, USA, “Portraits On The Edge”, June–July 2006 / St John´s church, Notting Hill, London, England, “Blond Professions”, May–June 2006 / Kopavogur Art Museum, Iceland, “Touching”, Jan. 2005 / Gallery Hlemmur, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Hopscotch and other games, 1998–2000”, May–June 2001 / Kopavogur Art Museum, Iceland, “Blonde Nurses”, Jan. 2001 / Gallery Bosom (travelling gallery), Iceland, Feb. 1998 / Gallery 20 m2, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Four Monitors”, Feb. 1998 / Gallery Corridor, Reykjavik, Iceland, Dec. 1997 / The Living Art Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Two Dimensions – Two Visions”, May–June 1997 / Gallery Greip, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Paintings without figures”, Oct.–Nov. 1995 / Vid Hamarinn, Gallery, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland, April 1995 / Listhusid Thing, Gallery, Akureyri, Iceland, Oct. 1994 / Window Gallery, Akureyri, Iceland, July 1994 / Gallery Greip, Reykjavik, Iceland, Feb.–March 1994 / Djupid Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, Sept.–Oct. 1990

 

Group Exhibitions: Helsinki Contemporary, Finland, “Working on It”, January 2020 / Duktus Bau, “In Situ”,Hirzenhein, GermanyJune–August 2019 / Berg Contemporary, “Louder than Bombs”, Reykjavik, Iceland, May–June 2019 / Arnesinga Art Museum, Hveragerdi, Iceland, Aug.–Oct. 2018 / Elverket, Tammisaari, Finland, “By Water” June­–Sept. 2016 / Kunstkraftwerk, Leipzig, Germany, “Let’s get Physical” May 2016 / Helsinki Contemporary, Finland, “Remain in Light” June 2015 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Kjarvalsstadir, Iceland, “Just Painted” March–June 2015 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Asmundarsafn, Iceland, “A Posteriori: House, Sculpture”, Sept. 2014–Jan. 2015 / LA Art Museum, Hveragerdi, Iceland, “Points of Contact”, July–Sept. 2014 / Akureyri Art Museum, Iceland, “Icelandic Portraiture”, June–August 2014 / Norska Husid, Stykkisholmur, Iceland, “Pixelated time”, June–August, 2014 / Bjorkholmen Gallery, Stockholm, Sweden, “The Pleasure Principle”, April–May 2012 / Kopavogur Art Museum, Iceland, “Cyborgs”, Jan.–Feb. 2012 / Kopavogur Art Museum, Iceland, “Osyn”, Nov. 2011­–Jan. 2012 / Kling & Bang Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, “The Pleasure Principle”, Oct.–Nov. 2011 / Studio Stafn, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Hringekjuthrahyggja”, June 2011 / North Dakota Museum of Art, Grand Forks, USA, “Into The Tussock”, June–August 2010 / National Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Wistful memory”, March–May 2010 / Akureyri Art Museum, Iceland, “Rhyme”, June–August 2010 / Tintype Gallery, London, England, “Stripped away”, Feb.–March 2010 / Gallery Turpentine, “You are more beautiful than a butterfly”, Reykjavik, Iceland, May 2009 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Asmundarsafn, Iceland, “Rhyme”, May 2009–May 2010 / Tallinn Art Hall, “Happy together”, Estonia, Jan.–March, 2009 / Hangar-7, Salzburg, Austria, “Herna”, Sept.–Nov. 2007 / Gallery Boreas, Lenox, MA. USA, “Hyper states”, Aug.–Sept. 2007 / Ketilhusid Gallery, Akureyri, Iceland, “Skyldi eg vera thetta sjalfur!”, Aug.–Sept. 2007 / Goteborgs Konsthall, Sweden, “Painting, Space and Society”, June–August 2007 / Gallery S-West, Keflavik, Iceland, “Pure Horror”, June–July 2007 / Kopavogur Art Museum, Iceland, “Indigo”, Golden Brush, Jan.–Feb. 2007 / Kunsthalle, Kunstverein, Bremerhaven, Germany, “Tiere auf Grasshockern”Sept. 2006 / Gallery Boreas, Pittsfield, Massachusetts, USA, “Portraits on the edge II”, August 2006 / Hoffmannsgallery, Reykjavik Iceland, “Kennd vid tilfinningar”, summer 2006 / Living Art Museum, Reykjavik Iceland, “Cold Climates”, March 2006 / 3 Colts Gallery, London, England, “Black Bile”, April, 2005 / National Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, “New Icelandic Art”, Nov. 2004–Jan. 2005 / Seven Seven Gallery, London England, “then …part 7, Silent Reading”, Oct.–Nov. 2004 / APT Gallery, London, England, “Cold Climates”, April 2004 / Phoenix Gallery, Brighton, England, “then …part 6, Developments”, Feb. 2004 / Gallery Corridor, Reykjavik, Iceland, (also curator), “One day”, Jan.–March 2004 / ASI Art Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, “then …part 5, Recent Encounters”, Jan.–Feb. 2003 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Kjarvalsstadir, Iceland, “then …part 4, Remembered Structures”, Jan.–Feb. 2003 / Los Angeles, USA, Miniature, touring show, jan. 2003 / Tokyo, Japan, Miniature, touring show, feb. 2003 / Century Gallery, London, England, “14×14”, Dec. 2002 / Kopavogur Art Museum, , Iceland, “Gallery Hlemmur”, July–Aug. 2002 / Akureyri Art Museum, Iceland, “Akureyri in art II”, July–Aug. 2002 / Proje4L, Istanbul, Turkey, “Stop for a moment painting as narrative”, Apr. 2002 / Century Gallery, London, England, “then …part 3”, Apr. 2002 / Seven Seven Gallery, London, England, “GIANT 2”, Des. 2001 / Seven Seven Gallery, London, England, “then …on line drawing”, Oct. 2001 / Thorshavn Art Museum, Faroe Islands, “The Golden Brush”, Aug. 2001 / The Joint Scandinavian Embassies, Berlin, Germany, “The Golden Brush”, July–Aug. 2001 / Velasalurinn, Gallery, Vestmann Islands, Iceland, Apr. 2001 / Deutsche Bank, London, England, “Cross-Currents”, March–May. 2001 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Kjarvalsstadir, Iceland, “The Golden Brush”, Jan.–March 2001 / Akureyri Art Museum, Iceland, “Periscope”, Apr.–May. 2000 / Gallery Corridor, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Golden Brush”, Jan.–March 1999 / Listaskalinn, Gallery, Hveragerdi, Iceland, “Young Artists”, Apr.–May 1998 / Listhusid Thing, Gallery, Akureyri, Iceland, Feb. 1998 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Kjarvalsstadir, Iceland, “Close to the Body”, Jan.-Mar. 1998 / Vestsjaellands Kunstmuseum, Soro, Denmark, “Close to the Body”, Sept.–Oct. 1997 / Bow Arts London, England, Sept. 1997 / Alvar Aalto Museum, Jyvaskyla, Finland, “Close to the Body”, March–May 1997 / Henie Onstad Museum, Oslo, Norway, “Close to the Body”, Jan.–March 1997 / Norrkoping Art Museum, Norrkoping, Sweden, “Close to the Body”, Nov.–Dec. 1996 / Gallery Greip, Reykjavik, Iceland, “Final Show”, Nov. 1996 / Hafnarborg, Gallery, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland, “Icelandic Portrait”, June–July 1996 / Akureyri Art Museum, Akureyri, Iceland, “Love”, June 1996 / Gallery Greip, Reykjavik, Iceland, Jan. 1996 / Vid Hamarinn, Gallery, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland, “Take her home”, Nov. 1995 / Reykjavik Art Museum, Kjarvalsstadir, Iceland, “Some kind of everyday romanticism”, Oct.–Dec. 1995 / Vid Hamarinn, Gallery, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland, March 1995 / Deiglan, Gallery, Akureyri, Iceland, “Saloon”, Oct.–Nov. 1994 / Gallery Faubourg, Strasbourg, France, “Ca marche?”, Dec. 1992 / Djupid, Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland, Jan. 1991

 

Selected publications:

Coming Soon: Truth

Justice, 2017

Hope, 2016

Ladies, Beautiful Ladies, Crymogea, 2014

Blonde Miss World 1951–, Listasafn Reykjavíkur 2007

Touching, 1994

 

Works in Public and private collections:

National Gallery Iceland

Reykjavík Art Museum

Kopavogur Art Museum

Akureyri Art Museum

North Dakota Art Museum, Grand Forks, USA

University of Iceland Art Collection

Icelandair Art Collection

Safn Art Collection

Hangar-7 Art Collection, Salzburg, Austria

Various private collections

 

Other:

Owner and curator of Gallery Sign, Reykjavik: http://gallerysign.com

Part time teacher at the Iceland Academy of the Arts

Also taught at:

Academy of Fine arts, Helsinki

Reykjavik School of visual Arts

Lectures, participation in panels, both in Iceland and abroad

Former member of the board of the Living Art Museum

Allocation committe member for various grants and more

 

Ongoing Collaboration:

Birgisson has worked with Mika Hannula, curator and writer, on various projects since 2002. Their first collaboration was a group show called Stop for a Moment — Painting as Narrative, Proje4L, Istanbul Museum of Contemporary Art. They have also collaborated on projects such as Happy Together, a group show at Tallinn Art Hall in 2009. Pleasure Principle, a painting group show at Kling & Bang, Reykjavik in 2011 and in Björkholmen Gallery, Stockholm 2012. Hannula also curated Birgisson’s solo exhibition Blonde Miss World 1951–at the Reykjavik Art Museum in 2007 and Ladies, Beautiful Ladies at ASI Art Gallery and also Helsinki Contemporary, both in 2014. In 2016 they collaborated in the show Let’s Get Physical in Leipzig and in Hope, a solo exhibition at Hafnarborg Museum.