Iceland is rich in centuries of artistic creation, influenced by major European trends, yet it has preserved its unique identity. The country’s literary heritage originates from the 12th and 14th Century, and today’s Icelandic culture thrives with professional theatres, art galleries, museums, cinemas, a symphony orchestra, and opera.
Gudrun Newman is one of the most successful contemporary artists to emerge out of Iceland in recent years. Gudrun started to draw figures and create art at a very young age. She studied with noted Icelandic artists Louisa Matthiasdottir and Hringur Johannesson. She was also influenced by many of Iceland’s prominent visual artists, including ERRO and Johannes S. Kjarval, and credits other European masters such as Wolf Kahn and Kandinsky as major forces in her artistic development.
Her artwork is best described as post impressionism, as it varies from abstract figurative to non-objective and minimal. Newman’s paintings start with her concern with form and color, while the work’s narrative revolves around her personal imaginings as a reflection of natural shapes. “My work uses texture, form, design and color to tell a compelling story about the human condition.”
Each work arises technically in a way similar to that in which a composer creates a symphony. “My brushes and pallet knife strike the canvas and explore many aspects of my artistic vision. The color selection I use brings out my inventive stylized form and each piece of work I create is a reflection of my own personal experience that I hope has special meaning to others.”
“I am only the instrument holding the brush and applying the paint, everything else happens on its own.”