Sensual Food for Thought - Reykjavik Art Museum
Iceland’s largest gallery provides a plethora of cultural exhibits
Are you looking for some cultural pleasures this spring in Reykjavik? Then Reykjavik Art Museum might be the very place to go. Its three locations offer multiple choices of exhibitions, each in pleasurable surroundings. In the coming months many new and ongoing exhibitions will provide visitors with sensual experiences as well as intriguing food for thought.
Each of Reykjavik Art Museum’s three sites, Hafnarhús, Kjarvalstaðir and Ásmundarsafn, provides a different experience. Each has its own characteristics and emphases: Hafnarhús with its urban, rough charm; while one could say that Kjarvalstaðir and Ásmundarsafn, located in beautiful, modern buildings, acquire their charm by an interesting mixture of art, architecture and natural surroundings.

The Ásmundur Sveinsson Sculpture Museum is located in a spectacular building on the east side of Reykjavik. Ásmundur Sveinsson (1893-1982) was a sculptor who built the house and used it as his home and studio. He sought inspiration for his magnificent sculptures in Icelandic nature, literature and the common people. Opening at the beginning of May is, ‘Tales from the Vault – Sculptures Inspired by Literature’, where his works, inspired by literary motifs, will be exhibited. Through Sveinsson’s great storyteller’s imagination, amazing representations of the stories spring to life!

Named after Iceland’s most beloved painter Jóhannes S. Kjarval (1885-1972), the museum just celebrated its fortieth anniversary. Now its visitors can enjoy the biggest exhibition of Icelandic artworks ever to be held in Iceland. ‘Zoom Out – Salon Exhibition from the Collection’ will be in a state of perpetual flux, as new works are constantly installed and others removed, even as visitors roam through the gallery space.
In the beginning of June, another exhibition will open in Kjarvalstaðir: ‘Icelandic Art 1900-1950: From Landscape to Abstract Art,’ of interest to those who want to examine the roots of Icelandic painting tradition.

Located in the city centre, Hafnarhús is dedicated to contemporary art. There are two upcoming exhibitions of great interest:
Firstly, the exciting ‘Interval’ installation by the Icelandic artists Huginn Þór Arason and Andrea Maack. The exhibition revolves around the perception of fragrance, time and space; how these elements particularize every moment and experience of our lives. By presenting a three-dimensional experience of a period-room installation, which still remains flexible in form, the aim is to acknowledge the elusive, atmospheric, and temporal qualities of scent.
Secondly, the performances of Magnús Pálsson, one of Iceland’s most renowned artists, will be on view in the exhibition, ‘The Sound of a Bugle in a Shoebox: Performances 1980-2013.’ Magnús, whose art is an interesting fusion of different art forms, focuses on experimental approaches in order to play with language, sounds and space in his performances.


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