Born in London to Norwegian parents, Magnus Gjoen grew up across Europe in Switzerland, Denmark, Italy and the UK. He studied design in London and within the Milanese fashion industry before a 10 year career working with Vivienne Westwood back in London. Magnus has reportedly described himself as an accidental artist after receiving compliments for the creative decoration of his London flat where walls were adorned by old masters revised and repositioned through addition and manipulation.
The combination of one of his parents working in psychiatry and a long aesthetic relationship with the UK’s queen of rebellion and fashion creates an unashamedly glamorous re-presentation of the uncanny in fine art. These beautiful explorations of power and fragility through contemporary modes of collage, that Paolozzi would have been proud of, make us look again at Northern Renaissance classics with a smile; while being shocked or even horrified. The ephemerality of life is re-digested for our godless landscape with memento mori genre pieces reshaped into grenades and bombs; while portraiture is edited toward social commentary.
Magnus agitates us as the viewer with masterful culture jamming to create empirical works of fine art to love and ponder in our homes all over the world. His work is adored and exhibited from Japan to London to Santa Monica and is a massive favourite here in The Art of Protest Gallery, York where we have placed the work with clients in period mansion houses and riverside apartments to equal success.