Baldur Helgason

Featured Artworks by Baldur Helgason

Love Cry (A Smaller Splash) – Baldur Helgason

The Standoff – Baldur Helgason

Love Me – Baldur Helgason



Baldur Helgason combines elements of caricature with oil painting and portraiture techniques inspired by portrait masters like John Singer Sargent. Most of Helgason’s works feature a mischievous cartoon man that serves as the artist’s avatar. Drawn in the style of classic animations like Felix the Cat and Betty Boop, the perpetually smiling everyman is both childlike and unsettlingly adult in his activities, as in the piece Etc. Etc. Etc. (Action Painting) (2020), where he is shown holding a lit cigarette in his comically oversized hand. Helgason’s works have been exhibited in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, Amsterdam, and Reykjavik, and he had a market breakout in 2021 when his painting Portrait of a Man in a Trench Coat (2017) more than quadrupled its high estimate at auction, selling for $77,879.

All Available Art

Love Cry (A Smaller Splash) – Baldur Helgason

The Standoff – Baldur Helgason

Love Me – Baldur Helgason


Banana – Baldur Helgason


Metaphysical Painting – Baldur Helgason


Baldur Helgason is an Icelandic visual artist who lives and works in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood. He graduated from Iceland University of the Arts in 2008 and from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco in 2011. Through his work, Helgason experiments with the depiction of the human figure, playfully exaggerating the features and toying with representation of human emotions. While playful and humorous on the surface, a lot of these images are actually portraying anxiety, loneliness, and melancholy, all presented through the extraordinarily ordinary life of his iconic comic-like character. Big-eyed, big nosed and with impossible limbs, this jolly fella feels as if he walked out of a classic cartoon, yet he is regularly portrayed while smoking drinking or getting involved in some sort of mischief. Baldur Helgason has held three solo shows in Chicago and one in his native Iceland. He has also participated in several group shows in the US and Europe.

Selected Exhibitions:

  • 2011 The New Surrealism, Group Show, Modern Eden Gallery, San Francisco, CA

  • 2011 Character, Three Person Show, Million Fishes Gallery, San Francisco,CA

  • 2012 SF Weekly’s Artopia Event, Honoring 10 Mastermind Finalist at Public Works, San Francisco, CA

  • 2013 Talkies ,Group Show, Wix Lounge, San Francisco, CA

  • 2013 Art of the Big Shoulders, Group Show, NYCH Gallery, Chicago, IL

  • 2016 Bald by Baldur, Solo Show, Port Gallery, Reykjavík, Iceland

  • 2016 Samsýning, Group Show, Port Gallery, Reykjavík, Iceland

  • 2017 TV Dreams, Three Person Show with Peter Jeppson & Zachary Davis Mory, Miishkooki, Skokie, IL

  • 2017 Three Wise Monkeys, Solo Show, NYCH Gallery, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Images Now, Group Show, Uncle Art Gallery, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Restless II, Group Show, Galerie F, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Happy Thoughts, Group Show, All Star Press, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Familiar Faces II, Group Show, Galerie F, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Plushform, Group Show, Rotofugi, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Power Couples, Group Show, Galerie F, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Skemmtilegs, Two Person Show with Patty Spyrakos , Port Gallery, Reykjavík, Iceland

  • 2018 Hot Fun in the Summertime, Group Show, Line Dot Editions, Chicago, IL

  • 2018 Show of Heads, Limner Gallery, Hudson, NY

  • 2018 Loneliest Stranger, Solo Show, Galerie F, Chicago, IL

  • 2019 Onward, Group Show, La Luz De Jesus Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

  • 2019 Thinkspace, Group Shows, London, New Orleans, San Francisco, Chicago

  • 2019 Islands, Group Show, Ramp Gallery, London, UK

  • 2019 Universes 2, Group Show, The Garage, Amsterdam, Netherlands

  • 2019 Lovefool, Solo Show, NYCH Gallery, Chicago, IL

  • 2019 Tender, Solo Show, Padre Gallery, New York, NY

  • 2020 Spiritual Paintings for Emotional People, Solo Show, Richard Heller Gallery, Santa Monica, CA

  • 2020 Silly Things, Two Person show with Patty Spyrakos, Gallery Port, Reykjavík, Iceland

  • 2020 Assortments, Two Person show with Emilio Villalba, Ramp Gallery, London, UK

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