John E Franzén

John E Franzén
John E Franzén © Foto: No WaIT AB

“Oh yes – It is the man with the big Cadillac, Hell’s Angels, Doug’s Place, The Royal Family. His name is associated with different works like that, large and always astonishing – and they have always been carried out without compromise. What he has made up his mind to do he has also done; his will-power can be noticed in every detail.”
This is a quotation from a book by Ulf Linde “Introductions. Ulf Linde at the Thielska Gallery 1977-1997”.

“John E Franzén painted the famous “Hell’s Angels”. This was done in America. It took him three years to paint it. He has depicted every little detail. “Motorcycle enthusiasts buy John E Franzén’s paintings. But when he paints motorcycles he does not think it is necessary to make every detail look like those of the model. He adds and takes away, making his own model. He is painting his own vision of the existing model.”

“Motor vehicles are rarely given a main part in artistic work. But for John E Franzén they are personalities. He scrutinizes every detail of his engines. Beneath the perfect surface a pulse is beating.”

“John E Franzén paints not only motorcycles and cars but also landscapes.”

“I do everything with the heart and the stomach, he says. I never do anything with irony or with a distance to the object. Everything is taken seriously. There is no intellectual overtone.”

The quotations above are translations of texts taken from “The Life of Artists in Österlen” written by Lisa Ovesen and sold at artist homes, galleries and tourist offices in Österlen in southern Sweden.


Born in Stockholm, Sweden

Professor of painting, The Royal University College of Fine Arts, Stockholm

Member of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Stockholm

Selected Solo Exhibitions

Galleri Hattlösa, Förslöv, Sweden

Gävle Konstcentrum, Sweden (pictures from the exhibition)

Stene Projects, Stockholm, Sweden

Wanås, Knislinge, Sweden

Stene Projects, Stockholm, Sweden (presentation in Swedish)

Stene Projects at Volta, Basel, Switzerland

Tomarps kungsgård, Sweden

Brandstrom Stockholm, Sweden (presentation in Swedish)

Photography, Tomarps kungsgård, Sweden
Kabusa Art Hall, Sweden

Academy of Fine arts, Stockholm, Sweden

Thielska Galleriet Stockholm, Sweden

The Castle of Gripsholm, Mariefred (Portrait of the Royal Family), Sweden
The National Swedish Museum of Fine Arts (Portrait of the Royal Family), Stockholm, Sweden

Selected Group Exhibitions

Swedish Pop Art , Östergötlands Museum, Linköping, Sweden

Stene Projects, Stockholm, Sweden

Tomarps kungsgård, Resumé, Sweden

The Artists´ Garden, Växjö Art Hall, Sweden
Friends of Art, Åke Andrén´s Collection, Jönköpings Läns Museum, Sweden
The Artists´ Garden, Landskrona Art Hall, Sweden Speed Art Design, Galleri Imma, Mariestad, Sweden

Hishult Art Hall, Sweden
Virserum´s Art Hall, Sweden

Fantasy and Reality, an exhibition of the art of graphics, Djakarta, Indonesia, arranged by Gallery Astley in collaboration with the Swedish embassy.

Masterpieces from Gripsholm Castle, National Portrait Gallery Washington D.C, U.S.A

An exhibition in China arranged by NUNSKU (The Committee for Contemporary Swedish Art Abroad).
Proof print, The National Swedish Museum of Fine Arts, Stockholm

Drawing, S.A.K. Academy of Fine arts, Stockholm, Sweden

Water-colour, Galerie Il Segni, Roma, Italy

Musée dárt Moderne à Bruxelles, Belgium

Musee Salvador Allende – Stockholm Museum of Modern Art, Sweden

Neuer Realismus aus Schweden, at a number of museums in Germany.

Ars 74 Helsinki, Finland

Alternative Suédoise, Musée dárt Moderne, Paris, France
Alternative Suédoise, Louisiana, Denmark
Swedish Alternative, Gallery F-15 Moss, Norway

Swedish Alternative, Stockholm Museum of Modern Art, Sweden

Black and White, Drawing exhibition arranged by S.A.K. Academy of Fine Arts, Stockholm, Sweden

Salon de la Jeune Peinture, Paris, France

Selected Public Collections

The portrait collection of Gripsholm castle, Sweden
Goteborgs konstmuseum, Sweden
Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden
Nationalmuseum, Stockholm, Sweden

The content of this biography is updated on behalf of the artist.

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