Bo Magnus ran a film production company with her husband for 10 years
making shorts and children’s films. She has also taught fine art to teenagers. In the end the art bore out and eventually she took herself to college.
We talk about childhood and the scope for play and interpretation. I
mention a current show by Martin Honert, where he has reproduced from memory his boarding school bedroom, a sculptural installation that functions like a three-dimensional photographic negative. Bo talks about an enduring influence, the director Werner Herzog, his intense
early films such as Aguirre, My best fiend and Even dwarfs started small, about new land, battle, aggression.
In one corner of the room a spotlight illuminates a small congregation of plastic figurines. Today’s arrangement is a homage to Shirin
Neshat’s film, The Green Garden, where four women from different classes talk about their lives and politics. In Bo’s feudal arrangement princesses, maidens and fairies seem about to charge forth, sword in hand. The background is a picture of an apple grove,
next to which a male figurine falls back. This is one of many stagings, Bo has orchestrated as starting points for the often anarchic crusades that are her paintings. She follows a very particular method, painting onto perspex plates, so that the works are
visible from both sides. Her studio is full of acrylic medium - the base for her pigments. Using a tool she draws whilst the acrylic is still fluid, leaving an often gestural, loose and semi-transparent image.
(Soraya Rodriguez, Zoo Art Enterprises, FT10 Summer Catalogue)
I was transfixed by the pellucid, marbled effects created by Bo Magnus
using acrylic in medium on Perspex; her small, theatrical figures had an ephemeral, dreamlike quality, as if they were made of smoke or reflected on the surface of rippling water. (Kitty Hudson, MurmurART, Review Jul 13, 2010)
Bo Magnus's acrylic paint on film firmly manages to make abstract
classical styled work, work. Due to what looks like the effect it creates a certain ill-defined fantasy dream, depicting various dignitaries, lords and peasants alike, flowing gracefully in celebration or pose. Although some people feel like they're missing
something, I couldn't help take pleasure in watching some spectators squirm their pupils desiring details that weren't there. One man also tried to peer behind the paintings as though the artist may have
pinned them on the wrong way around. (Roger Daniel, MurmurART, Review Jul 13, 2010)