Leif Knudsen 1918-1975

Leif Colbjörn Knudsen was born on 20th November 1928 in Stockholm - the son of the actor Kolbjörn Knudsen (1897-1967). He was a Swedish painter.

In 1948 Knudsen traveled to Paris to study under studied under the French sculptor, painter, teacher and writer André Lhote (1885-1962). Between 1949 and 1953, Knudsen studied at Endre Nemes' Valand Academy (Akademin Valand) in Gothenburg. In 1953, Knudsen took part in a student group exhibition alongside the brothers Jorgen and Olle Zetterquist.

In 1954 Knudsen was a founding member of Group 54, a group formed as a reaction to the Gothenburg art climate (which they considered too confined and conservative). Their artist-run gallery, Galleri 54, opened it's doors in 1958 with an exhibition of surrealist painter Max Walter Svanberg (1912-1994).

Knudsen exhibited throughout Sweden and abroad - Notable solo exhibitions in Paris, Stockholm and Malmö. Group exhibitions include Great Britain, Germany, Holland and the USA. Knudsen was awarded a French National Scholarship (1953) and The Gothenburg City Cultural Award (1959).

Knudsen's public commissions include a mural for the Lion Restaurant, Gothenburg (in 1953) and a ceiling painting in Fässberg School, Mölndal (1963-64). His works are held in the collections of the Institut Tessin in Paris, the National Museum (Nationalmuseum) and the Museum of Modern Art (Moderna Muséet) in Stockholm, the Malmö Museum and the museums of Boras, Eskilstuna, Halmstad, Karlstad and Norrköping.

From 1966, Knudsen taught at the Gerlesborg School of Fine Art (Gerlesborgsskolan) Summer Academies.

Leif Knudsen died on 20th May 1975 in Gothenburg.

Group 54 awards an annual prize from Leif Knudsen Memorial Fund, a fund founded by the artist's wife, Bengta Knudsen.

Leif Knudsen