Death Is Elsewhere

Fríkirkjuvegur 7, 101 Reykjavík

Listasafn Íslands
08, May 2021 - 19, September 2021 (see calendar for other dates)
Open from 10.00am - 5.00pm

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General Admission See on official website

In Death Is Elsewhere the artist returns to familiar territory, where a romantic utopian spirit reigns. The ambiance is one of insouciance and melancholy as young couples wander through unvarying lowlands, singing to a guitar accompaniment. The symmetrical picture and constantly repeated melody entice the observer into the work's unending circularity, shutting out impending doom while constantly alluding to it.

Death Is Elsewhere was filmed in the Eldhraun lava field in south Iceland, near the volcano which erupted in the historic Skaftá Fires of the late 18th century, causing devastation in Iceland and affecting climate worldwide. By this choice of location, Ragnar references the eruption and the history, and he also brings Icelandic art history into the work, for instance by evoking the landscape paintings of Jón Stefánsson (1881-1962), and not least the light summer nights which were a favourite theme of Icelandic landscape artists in the early 20th century, at the time of the pioneers of Icelandic art.

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