New silkscreen by Bjørn Båsen


In the group show Tales we tell at the gallery in December Bjørn Båsen will show a new silkscreen from his Chronicle series.

The print will be launched in the gallery and online on Thursday the 1st of December.

Chronicle (Castle) II, 2022

Silkscreen, stochastic raster

Editions: 75

Size: 67x55cm

Photo: Fellesverkstedet

The work is printed by the artist himself at the Fellesverkstedet print shop in Oslo. The technique is screen printing in stochastic rasters, a technique with small dots in several layers of colours that is usually known and used in newspaper printing.

The silkscreen is based on the painting Chronicle (Castle) II (2022), shown in the exhibition «Mythos» at Nitja Centre for Contemporary Art (NO, 2022).

Tre motifs in Båsen's chronicle paintings are based on historic events, places and persons, as well as stories based in modern society. The painting and silkscreen Chronicle (Castle) II shows Disney's success as a media- and entertainment company, but also points to its murkier past on the way to success.

The foreground of the motif shows a dismantling Disney castle with sceletons and demonstrations in the background.

Båsen points to a specific event in the work. From Disney's establishment in 1923 the company had a formidable growth and success in animation. Walt Disney was from the company's start the company leader as well as a visionary artistic director, crucial for the company's productions and development.

After decades of success, the employees in Disney's animation department went out on strike in 1941, as Walt Disney would not let them get organised. Disney expected that his employees shared both his artistic and political visions, and lost his idealistic view on what it means to be an artistic director and boss. The posters visible in the edition are exact copies of those used during the workers strike.

Afterwards, Disney distanced himself from the cartoon part of the company, and all films produced after 1941 are made by someone other than Disney himself. The edition shows the dissolution between the young idealist and the older businessman What Disney, who instead set about building his own world; Disneyworld which opened outside Los Angeles in 1955. There he could be the sole ruler, without objections and views other than his own.

Bjørn Båsen (b. 1981, Eggedal, Norway) has a BA from The Arts Institute at Bournemouth and an MA from the Oslo National Academy of the Arts. Båsen’s works invite the spectator into a whole new world. His skillful perspectives make one feel as though you could take a leap and fall into his illusion of a blissful wonderland. However, in his world of porcelain puzzles, cracks are always present and propped with references to deep and often dark matters. Båsen’s oeuvre is filled with references to mythology, past and present decadence – the fairytales of former glory meet the realism of today.

His work is included in the collection of the Astrup Fearnley Museum, KODE Art Museum, Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum, Nordenfjeldske Kunstindustrimuseum, Equinor, DNB as well as numerous private collections nationally and abroad.