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DECEMBER  1,  2023



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75008, FRANCE 

Dumas+Limbach is pleased to present "Erró : a tribute" a solo show in our Parisian gallery. On this occasion, we will showcase emblematic artworks of the Icelandic painter Erró Guòmundur Guòmundsson.

Gudmundur Gudmundsson, known as Erró, was born in Ólafsvík, Iceland, in 1932. After training at the Fine Arts School in Reykjavik and the Academy of Art in Oslo (where he studied fresco and mosaic), the young Gudmundur, nomadic and eager for adventure, began traveling the world.

In 1958, encouraged by the artist Jean-Jacques Lebel, whom he had met earlier in Florence, he settled in Paris. This meeting was decisive, and introduced him to many artists, including André Breton, who introduced him to Surrealism. With them, he was able to continue the collage work he had begun in Israel. This became his main medium of expression.

Little by little, his studio became a veritable press agency. He amassed and collected images by the hundreds of thousands. In the manner of Aby Warburg and his "Mnemosyne" project, he created a veritable iconological atlas of our society. However, unlike the historian who was content with scholarly images, Erró also draws on and collects the iconography of mass culture.


In their eyes, 2007

Acrylic on canvas

96 x 68 cm


The caterpillar becomes a butterfly, 2007

Acrylic on canvas

99 x 68 cm

Omnipresent chronicler, he becomes the reporter of our society and aims, through his art, to imprint a gaze both critical and humorous. He is equally interested in the profusion, diffusion, and understanding of images. Synthetically, he blends cultures, eras, and references. Fernand Léger then rubs shoulders with Daisy, François Hollande, the Justice League.

Behind the quotation, pastiche, and derision, his works are imbued with a certain moral sense, a true political dimension. Contemporary allegory takes the lead. Provocative, Erró does not hesitate to desacralize tyrannical figures, to undermine the innocence of Disney characters. Despots confront heroes. A true anthropological puzzle, the images intertwine and form the guiding thread of his perspective on our society. The Vietnam War, the invasion of Iraq by the United States, the manipulation of despots, religion, sex: everything passes through the inquisitive gaze of the reporter.

The composition, through the junction of graphic universes, is sometimes vehement but always playful. The visual impact blends diametrically opposed elements from a spatiotemporal perspective. Occasionally unsettling, these compositions cannot help but elicit a smile, sometimes nostalgic, sometimes humorous, from viewers who encounter them. Whether aiming to surprise or shock the audience, Erro's universe leaves no one indifferent. The interpretative frameworks multiply, making their understanding unique.


Rings of power, 2019

Acrylic on canvas

160 x 95 cm 


Femme à la cruche et Daisy, 2006

Acrylic on canvas

138 x 201 cm 


Femme assise, Hommage à Picasso, 2006

Acrylic on canvas

72 x 99 cm 

Through his tributes, Erró appropriates the traces of the two painters he wishes to highlight: on the left of the composition, Fernand Léger, recognizable by rounded volumes, constant movement, and vibrant colors; on the right, Daisy, an emblematic character from the Disney universe. These are two universes and two types of images that oppose each other: the representation of labor in Léger, a communist artist who wanted to celebrate workers / the image of capitalist overconsumption society; the "learned" culture of the painter / the popular culture of comics. Erró seeks these oppositions, highlighting that our world is complicated.

The imprint of Picasso on art history and the various artistic projects preceding him is undeniable. Relying on the following postulate, we can only observe the homage works, inspirations, or reactions that have been developed following a canvas by the famous Catalan. But let us not be mistaken: it is not plagiarism, as Roy Lichtenstein said; it is necessary to understand it as a "recreation." In this new context, comic book characters and figures from Picasso's masterpiece share the same pictorial surface. In no way should it be seen as mocking Picasso, but rather as another update of the master, establishing a connection between the younger generation and tradition.

« Speaking of day-to-day events, I seek to bear witness to a moment, a fleeting state of society, before the facts vanish through collective amnesia. »

Quotation from Erró

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