Category Archives: Iceland

HEIMSENDIR / THE END OF THE WORLD

Vernissage: 10th of August 2012, Artíma Gallerí (Reykjavik)

Natural disasters, weapon of mass destruction, reversal of Earth’s magnetic field or excessive alcohol drinking …

What’s wrong with the world? — What might end it? — And why?

These are classic questions which are often asked even though it´s given that nobody knows — for sure — the correct answer.

Here is a tiny glimpse of how our world might end …

Photographs by Konsthopp

Death, disaster and — to a lesser extent, notions of apocalypse have always been visible in the art history. Concerns about the end of the world were often found in films of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s and the topic seems to have made a remarkable comeback in further contemporary art forms last decades. The theme appeared most recently in “Heimsendir,” an ambitious group exhibition in Artima gallery.

The exhibition was particularly diverse, as you can expect when 23 artists are displaying their work together. The artists are former classmates that studied together at the Iceland Academy of Arts from 2006 to 2009. After their graduation the students headed to different directions — all bringing back new educations, experiences and outlooks.

Apparently — the classmates were cheerful to renew their friendship. After a great night out — waking up the day after with appropriated hangover — some of them probably thought:

Hey, this headache might end the world!

Date: 10th – 19th of August 2012

Artists: Amanda Tyahur, Anne Marte Overaa, Arna Óttarsdóttir, Auður Arna Oddgeirsdóttir, Bergdís Hörn Guðvarðardóttir and María Dalberg, Brynja Kjartansdóttir, Davíð Hólm Júlíusson, Emil Mangúsarson Borhammar, Erla Silfá Hordvik Þorgrímsdóttir, Haraldur Sigmundsson, Hlynur Heimisson, Jonatan Jannert, Kolbrún Ýr Einarsdóttir, Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir, Sara Ross, Sigurlaug Gísladóttir, Solveig Pálsdóttir, Sunna Schram, Þorvaldur Jónsson, Þórarinn Ingi Jónsson, Þórður Grímsson and Örn Alexander Ámundasson

Curator: Árný Fjóla Ásmundsdóttir

Place: Artíma Gallerí, Skúlagata 28, Reykjavik

P.s. In relation to the exhibition the artists published a book that can be bought at the gallery. If you are interested you can check out the graduation exhibition from the same group in 2009 here

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Filed under Art, Group exhibit, Iceland, Konsthopp, Multimedia, Reykjavík

AUTUMN ASSEMBLY IN AUGUST

Flavor of the month: Watershed

After a long and “oh-so-wanted” summer break — witch passed by “oh-so-amazingly-fast” — I can finally welcome my favorite season. The fall.

Although it´s sunny and over 20 °C outside my window (it doesn´t get any warmer here in Iceland) — all I can think about is misty days, multicolored leaves and my new umbrella.

Photos taken from google and pinterest

Watershed, a turning point or — a milestone are typical for this time of the year. Exciting assignments are coming up. Accordingly — the editors of Konsthopp are back to school, trying new exciting education. And I will finally move to my own “oh-so-wanted” apartment, with my “oh-so-fat” newborn.

Despite days loading work and other ethical obligations (e.g; changing diapers and doing boring housework!) — Konsthopp will try to keep on track, reporting live from the Nordic alternative art scene!

Happy fall everyone!

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Filed under Art, Art festival, Favourite of the month, Iceland, Konsthopp, Stockholm

WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?

Final words: The Icelandic Love Corporation

It’s the last day of June and time to move on. Before we continue onto the summer — keeping a lower profile on the country side — we are wrapping up the “flavor of the month“, closing June with an artistic work that touches upon existential and political issues, which is theatrically staged with a humorous angle — in a peculiar fusion of realism and surrealism…

Happy summer everyone!

The Icelandic Love Corporation — Eirún Sigurðardóttir, Jóní Jónsdóttir, Sigrún Hrólfsdóttir and Dóra Ísleifsdóttir (who left the group in 2001) — met in Reykjavík, at the Icelandic College of Arts and Crafts. Their first big performance was “The Kiss”, featuring the artists kissing and was broadcasted on national TV in 1996.

The Kiss / Photo taken from ICL’s homepage

A kiss — they say — that was a little bit longer than a friends kiss but a little bit shorter than a lover’s kiss. In the end of the performance one of the artists kissed the camera lens and in the meantime, sent a kiss to every home in the whole country.

“With this performance we were trying to spread love and good feelings,” Sigrún says (in Grapewine 2007).

And since then — since that first kiss — the mission of the group has only expanded in line with their steadily growing career.

Women good enough to eat / Photo taken from ILC’s homepage

To The Icelandic Love Corporation, there are no rules — anything goes and nothing is irrelevant. Even though spreading love and good feeling is a part of their performances, The Icelandic Love Corporation has never been afraid to go all the way. Humour, femininity and carelessness is mixed with political thoughts and serious topics in their work, which is mostly performative — depending on time, place and “had-to-be-there” moments.  The group is enigmatic and their vibrant, life affirming work is both transient and anonymous. It’s not resistant to pin-pointing or analysing — and trying to do so is rather futile. Their work is honest — and refreshing — with a serious undertone that isn’t unwieldy. As is written in an interview with the group in the SiouxWire Annex from 2006:

“As a whole, their body of work is like an ornate diary, a window into their own personal journeys with the most incredible, enlightening outlook”.

“Where do we go from here?” / Photographer: Páll Stefánsson

Through performances and other mediums (including installations, prints, textile, sculptures, poetry, photography and videos), the group works to breakdown the distance between art and audience, and their projects often result in participatory events or public offerings. In one of their latest collaboration with Lilith Performance Studio in Malmö, the group created — in a living web of 5000 nylon pantyhose — a singular visual experience “Think Less, Feel more” that worked on irrational levels of the thinking process. The performance had its starting point in the visible and invisible contacts between people — conveying experiences of control and lack of control, conflict, sensitivity and elasticity …

… taking the performance artform just a one step further.

Think Less – Feel more / Photo taken from Lilith Performance Studio

The Icelandic Love Corporation (Gjörningaklúbburinn) was established by four Icelandic women in 1996 and since then, the group has gained a reputation both in Iceland and abroad. The fourth member (Dóra Ísleifsdóttir) left the group in 2001 but the three remaining members; Eirún Sigurðardóttir (1971), Jóní Jónsdóttir (1971) and Sigrún Hrólfsdóttir (1973), have kept on making artwork together, tour the world and surprise both audience and bypassers with innovative performances and lasting by-products including installations, sculptures, prints, textile, photographs, poetry and videos. Believing in the power of collaboration, the ILC’s history counts more than 200 exhibitions, as they’ve performed in small galleries and large museums, collaborated with renowned artists and musicians (f.ex. Björk) and invaded public spaces in major cities across the world. Their work can be found found in numerous public and private collections. 


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Filed under Art, Choreography, Documentary, Iceland, Installation, Live art, Media, Music, Performance, Photography, Political Art, Print, Reykjavík, Sculptures, Sociopolitical art, Sound Art, Textile Art, Video Art, Visual Art

THEATRE OF LIFE ARTISTRY

Net stroll: The Artist Theater (Iceland)

It might sound risky — or even ridiculous — to bring visual arts into the traditional theater environment. After all, the theatre  is (most of the time) a vast establishment where experiments are usually not allowed.

Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir / Photo by http://www.mbl.is/ Skapti

The “Artist Theater” is a group of artists from different directions that make glamorous evenings of performances in the basement of The National Theater in Iceland.

The group was originally founded at Klink og Bank in 2004 and has been working together every now and then, ever since.  In The Artist theater the audience can expect anything, the work is rarely rehearsed and the artist perform on each others work.

The Artist theater 2012 / Photo by Ingvar Högni Ragnarsson

In arts — the joy of creation is often hidden in the final outcome and is therefore totally out of sight from the audiences. This is dissimilar to what takes place in the Artist theater, where the process of creation is often in real time and for that reason — very visible.

Snorri Ásmundsson, an artist and a member of the group wrote this to explain the phenomenon further:

The phenomenon of The Artist theater is in fact undefined, founded by performance artists who had the need to have a go at existing methodology and format of performances and the theater. In Iceland there exists a strong tradition for the art of performances, here a very unique scene has evolved. A scene that surely needs to be regularly explored. Our size and geometrical isolation certainly effects this need.

Snorri Ásmundsson

Feedback of the past performances have been strong and seems to be significant in today´s Icelandic cultural life. The Artist Theater wants to evolve, awaken and contribute to all people who are ready to accept.

The Artist theater 2012: Snorri Ásmundsson, Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir, Ingibjörg Magnadóttir, Ragnar Bragason, Saga Sigurðardóttir, Margrét Bjarnadóttir, Ragnar Kjartansson, Kristín Anna Valtýsdóttir, Rakel McMahon, Ástrós Elísdóttir, Símon Birgisson and guests.

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Filed under Art, Favourite of the month, Iceland, Konsthopp, Live art, Net stroll, Performance, Reykjavík, Sociopolitical art, Visual Art

THE DAYS OF THE CHILD PRODIGY ARE OVER

Performance: 25th and 27th of June 2012 at 20.00, Nýló (Reykjavik)

“He suffered from pre-natal depression, has found an outlet in poetry and visual art”

Betus is a child prodigy with outstanding artistic talents. He has been brought to Iceland by the Association of Former Child Prodigies to appear at a special event this June. The Association is honored to welcome Betus to the country. On the occasion of his arrival he will participate in an event in The Living Art Museum where guests are given the unique opportunity to get to know Betus and his work. Betus will not be on his own, joining him will be people of great importance and influence in his life, including his mother as well as his manager, a Native-American from the Southern States, known as the Indian. The mother of Betus and the Indian crossed paths in the early eighties and the three of them have been inseparable since Betus was conceived. Betus’ closest friend and soul mate; Beethoven, a former child prodigy in music, is also coming to Iceland for this occasion. He will be performing piano sonatas both nights.

The curator of the event is the world renowned art therapist, author and academic Dr. Sharon McStone, primarily known for her best sellers “DON’T LET YOUR CHILDS TALENT GO TO WASTE”, “TALENT IS MONEY & MONEY IS TIME” and “THE G-WORD – GENIUSES ARE PEOPLE TOO”. She has specialized in alternative treatment for child prodigies and hyper intelligent individuals to channel their unique gifts into creative paths.

Drawings by Rakel McMahon

The performance at the Living Art Museum will present the piece in its current state of being; it is a part of an extensive process where the dialogue between drawing and text gives birth to a performance and eventually a book published by ÚTÚR publishing.

You can join the event on Facebook here!

Date 25th and 27th of June 2012 at 20.00.

Artists: Anat Eisenberg, Bergþóra Snæbjörnsdóttir, Rakel McMahon, Saga Sigurðardóttir and Yair Vardi. Music and sound is by Eberg. Set and costume assistant is by Eva Signý Berger.

Place: Nýló (The Living Art Museum), Skúlagata 28, Reykjavik

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Filed under Art, Artist books, Curator, Drawings, Favourite of the month, Iceland, Konsthopp, Performance, Reykjavík, Uncategorized

FATAL FETISHISM

Online publication: KATALOG (Canada)

“Irony serves as an alibi for a fetish.” (Nathaniel Wing)

Fetish is one of my favorite words in the dictionary. There is something fascinating, disturbing and — well — disgusting about fetishism. My prospects about this perverted phenomenon; often makes me laugh.

And more people seems to be preoccupied by fetish.

The 6th issue of KATALOG — Fetish

A new issue of KATALOG was recently launched. For those who don´t know — Katalog is an e-magazine dedicated to the practice of performances and live arts around the world. The magazine is a free paperless performance publication, published quarterly by the Central Canadian Center for Performance. CCCP’s main aim is to create awareness and document performative and live arts.

Two Icelandic artists; Eva Ísleifsdóttir and Rakel McMahon presents their work in the latest issue.

 

Eva Ísleifsdóttir wrote the following words about her performance; “It´s a sign“:

… Walking around Cork city center with a big traffic symbol on my back. The by-passers offering their help but I politely said no. It was heavy and awkward. The Cul de sac is a traffic symbol that indicates a dead-end street. Using the symbol as a representation of reality, I walked the streets of Cork with a big traffic symbol on my back. Traffic symbols weight a lot in modern society, warning signs, indications, they are directing us, for our own safety. Older civilizations recognized the power of symbols and used them extensively in everything. What if the ´normal´ traffic signs and symbols are subliminally and cynically trying to tell us something? …

— Eva Ísleifsdóttir

“It´s a sign” by Eva Íslefsdóttir. Image/ Irene Murphy  

Rakel McMahon, which our readers should be familiar with, presents in the same issue her new work; “What is the purpose; it´s allreadmade.” Let´s see what the artist says about her artistic approach.

.. I´m interested in approaching and presenting my subject matter with reinterpretation, metaphors, and reevaluation of serious/humor and what is considered normal. The subject and issues I like working with are connected with gender, sexuality, stereotypes and normality.”

— Rakel McMahon

 “What is the purpose; it´s allreadmade.” by Rakel McMahon (2012) Image/Konsthopp

You can download Fetish, the 6th issue of KATALOG, here!

KATALOG is an online publication with video and sound capabilities which is dedicated to the practice of performance and live art.  Each issue deals with a different type of performance and in this issue we focus on artworks that deals with the object as an accompaniment or as the main focus of a performative work.  This call is open for artists from all disciplines from around the globe.  

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Filed under Art, Art Magazine, Favourite of the month, Iceland, Live art, Performance, Political Art, Sociopolitical art, Uncategorized, Visual Art

ARTIST DISCOVERY #6

Graphic designer: Regína María Rourke (Iceland)

Over a cup of coffee in Reykjavik last winter — my friend told me about her artist friend in New York. My friend´s friend — Regína María Rourke — is in fact an amazingly talented graphic designer. She re-appropriates both original and found images, re-balances and restructures it into a totally new artwork.

Photograohs belong to Regína María Rourke

Actually, I don´t know anything about the artist but her stunning artwork where catchy enough to caught my attention and make me more curious about her.

Happy Monday everyone!

Artist: Regína María Rourke 

Place: New York

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Filed under Art, Design, Iceland, Illustrations, Konsthopp, Print, Uncategorized