I come from a long line of sign writers and am happiest with a brush and some paint! Add
paint to fabric and I get really excited!!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Visual Art in Akureyri

Akureyri, with 17,000 residents, is the second largest “city" in Iceland and along with being a very cosmopolitan area in its own right, has numerous places of interest within its radius - can you say geothermal hot springs?! We had booked ahead for two nights accommodation and found ourselves staying in what we laughing called our "Ikea showroom”! It was a lovely 3 bedroom flat with every last item (except for one very unusual and relatively unattractive lamp shade) being from Ikea!

The city is located on a busy harbour and is surrounded by snow covered mountain peaks with its placement on the globe making it very close to the Arctic Circle. It is home to the only Art Museum in Iceland located outside Reykjavik. The Museum is associated with a Centre for Visual Arts with an extensive art program for all ages. Icelanders are a very, very creative bunch and they support the arts in their communities with every town having one, if not two statues along with craft cooperatives, many individual craft shops and just about everyone wears a handknit lopi sweater!! The corrugate metal and concrete houses are often painted beautiful shades of red, blue or gold and they stand out like bright flowers against the incredible land and seascapes.

The current exhibit at the Art Museum, in conjunction with the 150th anniversary of Akureyri, was called: Arsborealis - People and Culture of the Arctic. There were pieces from many artists of Northern communities including Iceland, Greenland, Norway and even Canada! There was also a photography exhibit on display with some huge photos printed and hung on the outsides of the buildings they were exhibited in.

The Museum advertised in this very unique way of using street art including a piece of sidewalk art which was secured to the pavement walkway. The dresses which hung over the road, flapping very aggressively in the strong Icelandic winds were approximately 12 - 16 feet in length! There were also rows of aprons, and various banners flying across the street.

Their means of drawing attention to their shows was definitely effective because we spotted them from afar and just had to get a closer look at these colorful banners. 


  1. Do you still wish to be featured on The Needle and Thread Network on Friday next week?

  2. Interesting post to read. I was wondering about three reasons why you should join Artsia.