Jón Sæmundur Auðarson, the creator of the Dead concept, lives and works in Reykjavík, Iceland. Born in 1968, Jón studied at the Icelandic Collage of Arts & Crafts and later at the Glasgow School of Art where he graduated in 2001 with a Masters in Fine Arts. Many of his installations make use of mixed media format, by combining painting, sculpture, video, and music in a formal and conceptual pastiche of sorts. Life and death has been an important theme in Jón’s work since he was diagnosed as HIV positive in 1994. He was forced to confront and conquer his fear of death. The exploration of this theme has given rise to his most well-known and accessible artistic creation: the many leveled concept of Dead.
Jon contributes his daily work to running his storefront Dead Gallery/Studio in Reykjavik where he curates art exhibitions, sells his own art and provides Dead t-shirts and clothing to the native and international community.
Dead is a brand focused on life, a paradox intended to awaken the sleeper. Even the domain name – www.dead.is - reflects this central contradiction. It is benign virus, intended to infect the subconscious mind and stir deep existential thoughts, rocking tunes to formulate them to, and well-made clothing in which to sit and think. The concept is Dead and Alive all at once.