Ernst Billgren was born in Stockholm in 1957. From 1982 to 1987 he studied at the Valand College of Art in Gothenburg, where he later became a teacher.
He started exhibiting in Sweden and abroad in 1985. Many of his works are now part of public collections, such as that of the Malmö Museum, the Gothenburg Museum, the Museum of Modern Art in Stockholm and the Swedish Arts Council.
Ernst Billgren is one of Sweden’s best known contemporary artists, recognized both for his artistic sense and impressive versatility. Indeed, he has produced paintings, drawings, and sculptures, besides writing theatre plays, film scripts and two novellas.
His artistic production, which makes use of a variety of media, reveals an ability to play with expressive languages that belong to both high and low culture.
He creates provocative works in which the line between real and unreal is often blurred, with the intentional aim of destabilizing the onlooker.
His Neo-Baroque taste for allegories, numerous references to other works, and his use of contrast between classical and contemporary motifs make Billgren’s work complex and intuitive, at once fabulous and obscure.
Far from placing us in front of copies of reality, as was the case with Realism and Naturalism, Ernst Billgren’s works present totally original products, meant to express a new concept of nature, in which foxes and squirrels are perfectly at ease in elegant middle-class living rooms, and where ducks and fish are seen as if the observer were underwater, and was seeing everything from a new perspective.