SOMETHING from NOTHING: The Visual Realm of Magnús Pálsson
Magnús Pálsson´s career has been remarkable for the breadth of his activities and his influence. As a teacher, he has had an immense effect on generations of artists. In theater he has created innovative stage sets and experimental plays. As a performance artist, Pálsson is unquestionably a pioneer. In visual art, he is a key player in the great changes that occurred in the field in the sixties and seventies. Revising the nature of artistic creation, a new imagery came about based on a critical stance towards art history up until then, but at the same time opening new ways to the future. Pálsson introduced works that, in some ways, were in the spirit of fluxus, pop and conceptual art, but have proven to be quite unique.
In 2013, the Reykjavík Art Museum focused on Magnús Pálsson's performances from 1980 to 2013 in the exhibition The Sound of a Bugle in a Shoebox, produced in collaboration with the Reykjavík Arts Festival. This time, in SOMETHING from NOTHING, the focus is on the visual realm found in physical works by the artist. Selected pieces from the early sixties till today reflect the fertile ways of thinking that Pálsson has always shown in sculptures, bookworks and two-dimensional works. The exhibition has works from the museum collection, loans from private and public collections and from the artist's studio. Reykjavík Art Museum preserves the Magnús Pálsson Archive, which the artist has built over many decades. Preserved in just about three hundred boxes, the material provides an invaluable insight into Pálsson's artistic creation.