Created and produced by the Icelandic Art Centre, recorded in Reykjavík, Out There explores what is out there/is out and about in the contemporary art (scene) in Iceland, between artists, curators and creative professionals, with conversations led by Becky Forsythe and Þórhildur Tinna Sigurðardóttir. Icelandic Art Center’s podcast Out There brings these things into focus and is a portal reflective of place and our present moment; a widened view that offers impressions of the Icelandic art scene, here and now.
What does the Icelandic art scene look like today? What can we learn from within the artists’ studio? By getting out there into the scene, our field, the studio, the storage, the artist-led space, gallery and museum, and by looking around us? Icelandic Art Center’s podcast Out There brings these things into focus and more. It is a new reflection on a specific place and our present moment; a widened view that offers vibrant impressions of the Icelandic art scene, here and now.
Join me, Becky Forsythe, in a series of ongoing conversations with artists, curators, organizers and art professionals as we think about artist practices and environments, discuss personal histories, themes and experiences, question history, the future, and where we are now. In an attempt to know who and what is Icelandic art today.
Out There is created and produced in Reykjavík by the Icelandic Art Centre.
Getting out and into the environments that define, support and surround artists and art professionals from Iceland’s art scene, Becky Forsythe sits down with Markús Þór Andrésson, Chief Curator of Exhibitions and Public Engagement at Reykjavík Art Museum. Their conversation begins with Markús’ own personal experience with art, as a history, a present scene, and leaves us with some thoughts about a potential future art scene in Iceland.
In this episode Claire Paugam, a multidisciplinary French artist based in Reykjavík, shares her practice, themes and experiences from within the studio. An active board member of the Living Art Museum and community, Claire is the current recipient of the Motivational Award of the Year. This recognition is given by the Icelandic Art Prize to an emerging artist who has contributed significantly to the local art scene through their generous practice.
Guðjón Ketilsson is the current recipient of the Artist of the Year award from the Icelandic Art Prize. In this episode we meet him in the studio in downtown Reykjavík. We discuss early memories of art, his first solo exhibition, school abroad and specific works that span his over thirty-year practice. Guðjón’s experience of emerging into an art scene with the raw presence of the avant-garde gives inside perspective into a specific and vibrant time in Icelandic art.
Art collective Lucky 3 is composed of Darren Mark, Dýrfinna Benita Basalan and Melanie Ubaldo. From the perspective of their “collective, first-person immigrant experience” the group has recently opened up new space for conversation on diaspora, displacement, vulnerability and belonging. The collective’s Filipino-Icelandic origins informed their breakthrough exhibition Lucky Me?, held in Kling & Bang in 2019, and as an act of quiet activism, speaks volumes about identity and location, marginalization and claim, Filipino community, and locating culture from the periphery in Iceland.
Created and produced by Icelandic Art Center, Out There brings host Becky Forsythe in conversation with artists, curators and art professionals.
Intro: When you Know You Know, from the album Moonlove by artist Egill Sæbjörnsson.
In this episode, artist Katie Paterson and writer Andri Snær Magnason talk about the world we live in, the catastrophic consequences of the human race’s behavior, and how art can be a power of change.
Katie Paterson is widely regarded as one of the leading artists of her generation. She recently exhibited in the Living Art Museum in Reykjavík with the exhibition The Earth Has Many Keys. The title of the exhibition, taken from a poem by Emily Dickinson, indicates that the earth is the basis for our knowledge of nature, time, change, the universe and ourselves.
Andri Snær Magnason is an Icelandic writer and documentary film director. His newest book, On Time and Water, about the climate catastrophe is been translated to more than 30 languages.
Intro: When you Know You Know, from the album Moonlove by artist Egill Sæbjörnsson.
For the second season of the Icelandic Art Center’s podcast ‘Out There’, Þórhildur Tinna Sigurðardóttir joins Becky Forsythe as co-host. In this episode they chat with collaborative art partnership Bryndís Snæbjörnsdóttir and Mark Wilson – also known as Snæbjörnsdóttir/Wilson. Their 20-year interdisciplinary art practice explores and tests human and more-than-human relational behaviours within specific locations, in a context of environmental change. Snæbjörnsdóttir/Wilson are committed to the principle that Fine Art, with its unique and ever-expanding set of methodologies, has a special and important contribution to make to knowledge production and indeed in identifying how knowledge itself is constituted.
Tinna also tells us a bit about the Reykjavík Art Festival, currently ongoing in Iceland til the 19th of June.
The second episode of the second season includes conversation with Becky and Þórhildur Tinna and the Artist in Iceland Visa Action Group members Wiola Ujazdowska and Bryndís Björnsdóttir aka. Dísa. AIVAG is an advocacy group working towards the possibility of greater accessibility to residency permits for artists in Iceland. Dísa and Wiola are both practicing artists themselves, or art workers as Wiola prefers to describe her artistic and curatorial practice. In the episode Becky and Tinna get to know AIVAG’s activities and ambitions, contemplate the precarity of being an artist of foreign origin in Iceland and have the chance to discuss with Wiola and Dísa about their artistic work and recent projects.
In this episode of Icelandic Art Center’s #podcast “Out There” Lukas Strolia (LT), who was assisting the Icelandic Art Center as a part of the Borderland Poetics exchange project between Rupert (LT) and CCA (EE), talks to his colleagues J.L. Murtaugh (US) and Erik Vojevodin (LT) about the artist-run space Autarkia, Vilnius.
Autarkia is located in the former workers’ canteen at the long-gone secret Soviet military factory in Vilnius, Lithuania. The group discusses what it takes to run a self-proclaimed Artist daycare centre, which is liquid enough to act as an artwork and the creative entity providing artistic services. They talk about its natural resistance to formality, its ambiguity, functionality, successes and struggles.
In this episode of Out There Becky and Tinna discuss what is taking place at Iceland University of the Arts, from the perspectives of artist and head of the fine art department Bjarki Bragason and curator and Professor Hanna Styrmisdóttir. Sharing their personal experience and diverse professional backgrounds, Bjarki and Hanna contribute to the progressive and expanding art university in Iceland. We discuss the Universities goals, ambitions and future, program formats and the thriving student body.
Hanna Styrmisdóttir is a curator, art adviser and supervising professor of the International MA Curatorial Practice based in Iceland University of the Arts.
Bjarki Bragason is an artist and Head of the Fine Art Department at Iceland University of the Arts. In his work, Bjarki focuses on collisions in time, tracing paradigm shifts through investigating these shifts in geology, botany or architecture.
This episode ends on a performative note with a script being read out loud by recent BA graduates in Fine art from the Iceland University of Arts. Hlökk Þrastardóttir, who invigilated at the Icelandic Pavilion as an intern of the Icelandic Art Center this autumn and her close creative collaborator Silja Jónsdóttir, the pair were in residency at Kling & Bang this past summer which ended with a pop-up exhibition in the gallery space.
Portrait of the artist Ragnar Kjartansson by Rafael Pinho.
The new episode of Out There features artist-led initiative Open, represented by two of the founding members, Arnar Ásgerisson and Örn Alexander Ámundason. Becky and Tinna speak to them about how Open is both a shared artist studio and a leading artist-led exhibition space. Örn and Arnar also reflect on the 2022 exhibition year at Open. Open was initiated by Arnar Ágeirsson, Hildigunnur Birgisdóttir, Una Margrét Árnadóttir and Örn Alexander Ámundason who collectively operate the space on a daily-basis. Based in the old fishing district and harbour area in Grandi, Reykjavík, the initiative contributes to lively cultural exchange in the area and has provided necessary space for local and international artists in the Icelandic art scene. They discuss the flexible format that Open works within, where responding to contemporary themes and critical dialogue is left open to possibility and is encouraged, the spark behind the initiative’s goals and where Open is headed.
You can listen to the newest episode of Out There podcast on our website and on Spotify!
In this episode we critically unpack Tracing Fragments with curator Daría Sól Andrews @dariasol_ and Brynja Sveinsdóttir @brynjas, Director of Gerðarsafn @gerdarsafn. We discuss exhibition themes, Gerðarsafn’s unique position within the Icelandic art and museum community, and the inner workings of independent curating in public institutions.
Tracing Fragments includes works by Kathy Clark @kathyjuneclark, Sasha Huber , Hugo Llanes @sashahuber, Frida Orupabo @nemiepeba, Inuuteq Storch @inuuteqstorch and Abdullah Qureshi @maq39. Through their works, these artists provide potential tools for emancipation and possibilities for healing by revisiting notions of identity ridden with complex legacies of dissociated, violent, and dispossessed experiences — themes and practices of unlearning, revising and reclaiming personal and shared histories that are relevant to our changing time.
Tracing Fragments opened on the 4th of February at Gerðarsafn, Kópavogur Art Museum and is on view until the 21st of May, 2023.
In this episode Becky and Tinna talk with Maria Alyokhina, or Masha from Pussy Riot, about the exhibition Velvet Terrorism in Kling & Bang Gallery which has generated important response in the local and international context.
The exhibition comes to a close for now this upcoming Sunday January 29th. This conversation covers the first presentation of Pussy Riot’s political actions in the exhibition and Putin’s war on Ukraine. Masha speaks about her own personal experiences and Pussy Riot’s efforts to raise awareness around the complexities and nuances about the past and current social and political situation in Russia.