Magdalena Cerha was born in 1947 in Zvolen, former Czechoslovakia. She studied fine arts in Bratislava. As a consequence of the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, Magdalena took a detour via France for Sweden, which then become her home country.
In Stockholm in the early 1970’s she worked in advertising for Arbman’s, and, with the Arts Academy in mind, enrolled at Idun Loven’s private art school to build her skills and portfolio.
From 1974 to present, she has produced a substantial body of work in oil, watercolor, charcoal drawings, and cement sculptures. Her interest in plants and sustainability has manifested itself in the form of an unconventional garden. She companion-plants ornamentals, herbs and vegetables in rich mosaics of color and texture. To maximize her harvest, she utilizes local resources such as manure from nearby stables, or decayed tree stumps from bountiful forests. Come autumn, she harvests edible berries and mushrooms. This lifestyle is directly influencing her art.
Magdalena has developed a symbiotic relationship with Earth. Summertime she works in the garden, soaking up inspiration. Wintertime she works in her art studio, loading her impressions onto her canvases. This way of life directly contributes to her unique and personal mythology and iconography. Her garden has landed her numerous awards and features in Swedish magazines.
"My art is auto-biographical. It also follows the seasons, and changes from year to year. Through art, I explore my mental health and aspirations in life.
My style varies with the various stages of life. Life is not, nor is my art, singular. I perceive my art as feminine; it is kind and offers me consolation and light.
I prefer oil on canvas, a technique that is easy for me to employ. As of late, I combine oil on canvas with collage. I collect scraps from old botany and art books.
Painting is a process; I often walk away from a piece, only to return to it once the next step has become clear to me. Nature and my garden inspires me, when I paint during cold winter days."
Selected works are on view every weekend between 11 am – 4 pm at Galleri Freja in Vallentuna, Sweden.
2020 – Galleri Studio Animar in Stockholm; Oil on canvas.
2017 – Galleri Greger in Stockholm; Oil on canvas
2016 – Kulturhuset in Vallentuna; Oil on canvas
2016 – Konst i Roslagen; Oil on canvas
2016 – Nut House Café in Upplands Väsby; Oil on canvas
2015 – Nut House Café in Upplands Väsby; Oil on canvas
2013 – Picchus Café in Upplands Väsby; Collage
2005 – Soul Art Gallery in Stockholm; Oil on canvas and ceramic tiles
For more about Magdalena Cerha, please visit her on Facebook. She often posts progress images of her works, and of her inspirational garden.
Hemmets Veckotidning, August 2004; A Garden Full of Surprises (translated to English)
Vi I Villa, summer 2006; A Plant Jungle (in Swedish)