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Asmundur Asmundsson

Asmundur Asmundsson, born in 1971, made his presence felt on the Reykjavik art scene as soon as he had completed his studies at the Reykjavik College of Arts and Crafts, before he went to New York to complete his studies at the School of Visual Arts. He now shares his time between Iceland and Berlin and Iceland.

 

Asmundur's work is deliberately brash and has often, especially in his early exhibitions, seemed calculated to shock complacent art lovers. In various installations he has pressed the boundaries of good taste with shoddy materials, product-branded objects and mixed cement standing in for male ejaculate. Many may find his art overly confrontational but on closer examination there is a consistent aesthetic at work in them and, what's more, they carry an insistent critical message.

 

These installations, however chaotic, are always offered in a celebratory mood and their elements stand without adornment or explanation for the viewer to accept or reject.The objects may seem almost insultingly insignificant in themselves - and certainly not attractive - but such objects have a subtle poetics and Asmundur is very much attuned to them. But Asmundur is also a detrmined prankster and he will always seek to turn any facile definition on its head - even when it comes to his own work.

 

More of Asmundur Asmundsson's work can be seen on his website at: www.this.is/ausgot/

Into the Firmament, 2005

 

"By executing the pyramid in the eternal form of rock-solid concrete, the piquant moment of contentment is made forever absolute. At the same time, this powerful monument makes the debauchery of contemporary culture obvious to the human eye. Lewd cerebrals might think of tons of excrement when watching the heavy machinery decant its faeces into the yellow butts - a tame creature in its natural habitation - but that's what makes said cerebrals lewd." AA

 #4 [August 2005]

 

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