Norm Magnusson discusses artistic process at Mount talk

December 05, 2019

Acclaimed Hudson Valley artist, Norm Magnusson
Norm Magnusson, an acclaimed Hudson Valley artist, intrigued attendees with a presentation held at Mount Saint Mary College last month.

Magnusson discussed the stylistic changes that his art has undergone through the years and the various design elements with which he has experimented.

Magnusson’s early work involved mimicking and combining the styles of other artists. One piece featured an unorthodox combination of the styles of Henri Matisse and David Hockney, which Magnusson notes was the first instance of his unique style.

“This for me was the beginning of me as an artist,” said Magnusson “It was the first instance of me having my own style, my own voice.”

Another one of Magnusson’s pieces features cartoonish background with a realistic, grey, drab road runner in the foreground. According to Magnusson, the piece symbolizes the effects that pop culture can have on the perception of reality.

His work has been shown in galleries and museums in the U.S. and abroad. It is held in private and museum collections around the world, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art, and has been reviewed extensively, including in the New York Times, Washington Post, and other well-known publications.

Magnusson has been awarded many prestigious grants, including from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council in 2008 for the realization of “On This Site Stood: Lower Manhattan,” a project to put plaques with contemporary social content around lower Manhattan, which was completed in summer 2009. In 2014, he received a New York State Council on the Arts grant and in 2015, was awarded a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship for sculpture.

Magnusson’s exhibition “kuh-myoo-nih-kay-shun” is currently being hosted at the Mount’s CMA Gallery. It’s a thought-provoking and witty exploration of communication breakdowns in contemporary society, he noted.

The Mount’s CMA Gallary is free and open to the public, and is located on the first floor of Aquinas Hall on campus, 330 Powell Ave., Newburgh, N.Y.  It’s scheduled to run through December 13. It’s open Monday through Friday during normal business hours, or by appointment. Email for more info.