We know—you have absolutely nothing to do this week. To help, we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite art events going on right now. Enjoy.
Sumarnótt / Death Is Elsewhere
Runs until September 19th – National Gallery of Iceland (Listasafn Íslands) – link!
Ragnar Kjartansson’s opus “Death is Elsewhere” made its debut in 2019 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Now, it’s back in the artists hometown for a summer long residency at the National Gallery. Featuring your favourite musician twins GYÐA, Kristín Anna, and (randomly) those two brothers from the National, the seven-channel video installation sees a single song played without end in a continuous loop. Filmed around the summer solstice in southern Iceland, “Death Is Elsewhere” is a referential work that turns romantic clichés on their head with irony, nihilism and absurdity to spare. Everyone loves Ragnar (except maybe his Mother, who famously spit on him every five years for an art project) so stop by and marvel at the beauty of nature—and the ever-lurking spectre of death.
Sigurður Guðjónsson: Unseen Fields
Runs until June 5th – BERG Contemporary – link!
Sigurður Guðjónsson will be Iceland’s representative for the 59th Venice Biennale in 2022, but you can see his works a bit closer to home right now, you lucky dog! Known for his immersive explorations of machinery, construction and relics, Sigurður combines the natural with the technological in a series of complex intertwined sound and visual experiences. His works are basically synaesthesia, except for those without synaesthesia, you know? In this exhibit, he dives into the hidden landscapes of matter, unveiling the uncanny and alien character of daily phenomena that are oft ignored, such as fluorescent lamps and charcoal. So drop by for some visual and aural sensations you might have never felt before. (Check out a longer article about him here.)
Nature in Transition – Shifting Identities
Runs until August 1st – Nordic House – link!
The North is changing. Man-made climate change is pushing our climates into new territory and things are moving more rapidly than we could have ever imagined. This special exhibition dissects the nature of that instability in the light of the four Nordic countries and their history and future. It’s an important topic—and one that we cannot afford to ignore. (Check out a longer article about two of the artists featured, Emilie Dalum And Michael Richardt, here.)
Callum Innes: A Pure Land
Runs until May 29th – i8 – link!
Fifty watercolours come together to make one single, complete work in an exploration of colour, form and the medium and possibilities of watercolour in general. Callum Innes is one of the most significant abstract painters of his generation—so feel blessed he’s even painting for us in general! Others are still in lockdown.
Runs until June 1st – Flæði – link!
John Rogers has been basically everywhere there is to be in Iceland. Now, he presents an installation of discarded trail markers found on his various hikes around the Icelandic wilderness. In doing so, he turns the useless into the useful, provoking reflections on purpose, memory, obsolescence, and transformation. (That said, we’d recommend not following their directions, lest you spend the rest of eternity wandering around Flæði being led astray by old markers.)
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