Nature Terrorist Found? - UPDATED - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Nature Terrorist Found? – UPDATED

Published June 6, 2013

The perpetrator of mysterious vandalism in a few natural preserves in North Iceland last month, may have been identified.

Hlynur Hallsson, an artist from Akureyri, came across images by Julius von Bismarck in a Berlin gallery recently. They portray words written with paint on landscape very familiar to Hallsson, amongst them Grjótagjá and Hverfjall in the North.

Akureyri vikublað reports about Hallsson’s findings but the vandalism, discovered on 1st of May, stupefied locals and the police. It seemed that someone had spent quite some time and put in a lot of effort to do the writing. The word “CRATER” was written in 17 metres tall letters on the rim of crater Hverfjall and “CAVE” inside Karlagjá, part of Grjótagjá, in 90 cm tall letters, with some paint spraying equipment.

The act is a breach of Icelandic nature conservation law, with a maximum sentence of two years jailtime, and The Environmental Agency of Iceland has referred to it as “nature terrorism.”

It now seems that more vandalism went unnoticed as one of the images shows the word “MOOS” painted on Icelandic moss, at some unrecognizable, Icelandic location. Moss happens to be a very delicate plant and can become extremely old, says on Akureyri vikublað’s website.

Julius Von Bismarck has held exhibitions in Iceland and seems to have various ties to the country, according to the story.

UPDATE: RÚV reports this afternoon that in an announcement, Julius Von Bismarck, refutes that he’s responsible for the vandalism. He says that the exhibition is a part a series to which four, anonymous photographers contributed, from four different countries. Bismarck states that he had no influence on the photo shooting and that he has only visited Iceland once, in 2010 and therefore couldn’t possibly be responsible for the vandalism just over a month ago.


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