Thursday 17th of October,2002- art

Art- Ger­arsafn art museum of kˇpavogs

Hlemmur at a turning point.


Exhibition of gallery Hlemmur at Ger­arsafn- art museum of kˇpavogur.  It is quite clever by Ger­arsafn to put up an exhibition of the works of a young art gallery like Gallery Hlemmur. In that way the museum gains both plenty of fresh talent, as well as a thumbs up for attending to the younger generation. In return Gallery Hlemmur gets the opportunity to introduce its dynamic operation to a wide audience and to review its achievements in an overall context and perhaps in a new perspective.  It can therefore be said that this is a "win-win" collaboration were both parties benefit, though Ger­arsafn will probably gain more in the long run.  This kind of exhibit gives rise to contemplation whether art museums and progressive art galleries shouldn't start to actively co-operate for mutual benefit. In that way the galleries would gain access to Funding, know-how and promotional channels, while the museums, as stated before, would  acquire a direct link to current happenings. Winds of freshness would flow and the museums would better meet the needs of its audience and owners, i.e. Kˇpavogurs residents of all ages.

I at least hope that this collaboration will have wider implication than merely a brief introduction of gallery Hlemmur and its artists, for as the galleries director has stated in the press, the gallery is at a turning point of starting to work seriously. Now there is no turning back despite a lack in understanding of the people controlling the funds essential to the gallery. This is a gutsy declaration by the Director and it entails a call for recognition and attention of those with capital.  Included in the exhibition at Ger­arsafn are pieces by almost all the artists that have exhibited at Gallery Hlemmur from the outset. Ger­arsafn's Director oversaw the selection, but the artists were invited to add one new piece each. For those who have followed the operation at Gallery Hlemmur, like I have, It's understandably most exciting to see the new works. I want to point out, for instance, a piece by Magn˙s Sigur­arson, who seems to be finding himself in a world of newspaper paper, in quite a remarkable way, as clearly seen in an exhibit in the Gallery not long ago. J.B.K Ransu continues his examination of the painting in two abstract pieces referring to the sensory reality of the sixties. Erling ■.v. Klingenbers' Video installation in the lobby is hilarious, wherein he tells us, albeit with some effort, how hard it is to be a poet with a clementine in your mouth. Furthermore I have to point out a wall piece by Eyr˙n Sigur­ardˇttir, emotionally minimalist, where she attends to minimalism in a personal and yet modern way. 

The Exhibition is a success and it gives an unusually good idea of what is happening in Icelandic contemporary art. Now is the time, in my opinion, for everyone to get going and see it with their own eyes. And those who nag, like broken records, that none paints a good painting anymore, will alas be forced to recant, If any notice can be taken of this exhibit, for the painting, just as other media, is alive and well in the art of young people today.

Halldˇr Bj÷rn Runˇlfsson