Jón Sæmundur Auðarson is an artist from Iceland and might be best known for his multi media Dead concept (2003 to present) and his art-band Dead Skeletons formed in 2008.

During his art career he has also been immersed in phenomena from Icelandic nature and Icelandic national culture and his work often draws certain parallels with the work of artist Birgir Andrésson (b. 1955 d. 2007) Jón Sæmundur was a student of Birgir Andrésson who taught at MHÍ (Icelandic College of Art and Crafts). Jón Sæmundur also worked for Birgir Andrésson at his art-studio as an assistant from 2001 - 2003.

Jón Sæmundur has for example used hand-painted jawbones from sheep, he has hand-painted taxidermed Icelandic ravens (White Ravens- exhibition 2005), he has used old rímur chants (Óður at the Living Art Museum), and made paintings and installations with the theme of Icelandic waterfalls. 

Waterfalls have been a source of inspiration to Jón Sæmundur since childhood in the Snæfellsnes region in West Iceland where he spent many summers with his family at Kleifarvellir in the Miklaholtshreppur district. In the mountains above the farm there were three waterfalls, Hamarfoss 1, 2 and 3 that descended from the cliffs and these became his childhood playground during summer and winter.

Jón Sæmundur studied at the mixed media department of the Icelandic College of Arts and Crafts in the years 1995- 1999. This is where he painted his first waterfall which portrays Gullfoss waterfall painted from an old postcard. In 2002 he projected a video work ( a loop) of a waterfall on the facade of the old Morgunblaðið building in the Reykjavik City Centre, as part of the Winter Lights Festival. The work showed a large waterfall streaming down the facade of the building with the accompanying thunderous sound. The work became immensely popular with the public and received rave reviews.

In the past 20 years Jón Sæmundur has regularly painted the Gullfoss waterfall in different versions. In recent years he began to collect old black and white postcards of Icelandic waterfalls and landscapes and began to translate them to paint, both on wood and on canvas. He has also travelled around Iceland recording videos and sound of waterfalls.

Foss - Waterfall - Plein air painting I 
Framed inkjet print on high-quality Hahnemühle paper
(Anti-reflective glass)
33 x 44 cm
Jón Sæmundur
1/12 + AP, 2019

Foss - Waterfall
Watercolour on graphic paper
56 x 76 cm
Jón Sæmundur Auðarson

Dead Gallery/Studio
Laugavegur 29
101 Reykjavík

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© 2020 by Jón Sæmundur/DEAD. All rights reserved.

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