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Part of NORTH at Listasafn Árnesinga

September 19 – December 20, 2020

Curated By Daria Sol

In the wake of global warming and excelling ecological changes, will our environments of today become a mere fleeting impression? The human imprint is permanently changing landscapes, savagely and irreversibly morphing our natural environments, and nowhere is this more evident than in the Arctic. From the retreat of glaciers to the most rapid rise in temperatures anywhere in the world, the countries bordering the Arctic are experiencing especially radical shifts. Nordic landscapes are being devastatingly altered by an unconcerned, self-absorbed human footprint. Once heralded for the unique beauty of its natural environments, the landscapes of the North are transforming at a rapid rate from the harsh effects of climate change. In response to these freshly emerging and turbulently changing landscapes, many artists are finding themselves compelled to focus on the fragility of nature and manifesting this perspective in their practices. New landscapes are being revealed already that have never been seen by the human eye, while others are inundated for an unforeseen future.

“Erna Skúladóttir is interested in how our connections with landscape have been shaped by received images, in particular, landscape painting. For her installation in this show, she created silicone moulds at the foot of the Langjökull and Sólheimajökull glaciers, capturing the textures recently revealed by the retreating ice. She also collected some of the ancient sediment that has been left behind, created by the friction between glacier and rocks. She then painted these moulds with successive layers of liquified clay and a binder, creating multiple casts from each one. Hung in a tight grid that covers the wall, these pieces form a new genre of landscape: one that goes beyond depiction to material appropriation. As Erna puts it, “The clay is… part of the new landscape that remains when the glaciers disappear.” The ‘flow’ from ceiling to gallery floor suggests the movement of an avalanche or flood, both of which are described as possible—even likely —outcomes of global warming.” 

Excerpt from catalouge text by Maria Porges

View catalouge here

Listen to North Podcast series by Tómas Ævar Ólafsson here (last one “Voices” is in english)

TV interview in “Menningin” here (in Icelandic)

Installation images by Pétur Thomsen

Process images by Erna E Skúladóttir

More detail and process images coming soon

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