Tag Archives: Ragnar Kjartansson

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

JOYFUL JUNE

Flavor of the month: Performance art

Over the past weeks I have been asking outsiders what they think about the visual art scene in Iceland. Is it different from the rest of Scandinavian scene? What stands out in the Icelandic art scene today?

The answer was clear.

Most people I spoke to, mentioned the active and very visible performance art scene. It did not surprise me. Our biggest stars in the visual art sectors today are performance artists — with Ragnar Kjartansson and Rúrí in the forefront.

Lord of the castle itch yes” by Leif Holmstrand (2009), CHRYSTAL

 “Back and Forth” by Gatëan Rusquet (2011), ANTI Festival

Mont Blanc” by Mimosa Pale (2011) Berlin. Image/Niina Braun

Peta loves Pollock” by Rakel McMahon (2009)

Dance Drawings” by Meghann Snow (2011), Young Art

Photographs by Konsthopp

Then again, some people might ask — what is performance art?
It is not easy to answer; but I hope the guidelines below might give you a tiny glimpse of what we are talking about when it comes to this specific art form.

THE SYMPTOMS OF PERFORMANCE ART

»Performance Art is live.

»Performance Art has no rules or guidelines. It is art because the artist says it is art. It is experimental.

»Performance Art is not for sale. It may, however, sell admission tickets and film rights.

»Performance Art may be comprise of painting or sculpture (or both), dialogue, poetry, music, dance, opera, film footage, turned on television sets, laser lights, live animals and fire. Or all of the above. There are as many variables as there are artists.

»Performance Art is a legitimate artistic movement. It has longevity (some performance artists, in fact, have rather large bodies of work) and is a degreed course of study in many post-secondary institutions.

»Dada, Futurism, the Bauhaus and the Black Mountain College all inspired and helped pave the way for Performance Art.

»Performance Art is closely related to Conceptual Art. Both Fluxus and Body Art are types of Performance Art.

»Performance Art may be entertaining, amusing, shocking or horrifying. No matter which adjective applies, it is meant to be memorable.

— By Shelley Eesak,  ArtHistoryAbout.com

This month we are going to dig deeper into the field of this ancient art form!

Related entries includes; “The weird girls project” and “I would like to set a trend.”

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Filed under Art, Art festival, Favourite of the month, Konsthopp, Performance, Political Art, Uncategorized