• mynd eftit Ásgrím Jónsson

In the light of the days

Paintings and drawings by Ásgrímur Jónsson

  • 1.2.2015 - 15.9.2015, Safn Ásgríms Jónssonar

The works of Ásgrímur Jónsson span a long period in the history of our nation - the times of struggle for independence and times of conflict as the rural society is disintegrating and Reykjavík is becoming a municipality. The interpretation of the seen and the unseen, landscape and oral tradition were his main topics throughout his career spanning the first half of the twentieth century. His paintings and drawings reflect sincere love for the country and the nation. The works chosen for the exhibition reflect the width in the artist‘s themes.

The exhibition is at the home and studio of the artist at 74 Bergstaðastræti. Opening hours until May 15th are on Sundays from 14.00 to 17.00.

Bookings for guided tours can be arranged through tel.: 515 9600 and 515 9625.


IN THE LIGHT OF THE DAYS –Ásgrímur Jónsson

Portrett af Ásgrími JónssyniEver since Ásgrímur sailed to Copenhagen from Bíldudalur on the mailboat Laura, when he was in his early twenties, we can follow him in his paintings. See the world in the light he interpreted, be it on a sunny day or in the icy grip of winter. We get aquainted with his fear and his longings through images of legends about ghosts, trolls and elves where certain moments in the stories are the object. Ever since the night-troll appears at the window and ghosts, phantombs and zombies come around. Icelandic nature appears before our eyes in various shades of light and colour which bring back strong feelings within the viewer and leaves no-one untouched. The sensual and rich colours in the painting of the yard at Háamúli  in Fljótshlíð are in tune with harmonic colours of the red and blue tones in the evening sun in Reykjavík. We connect to the artist as we put ourselves in his steps by the Elliðaárvogur estuary and see his shadow fall on the snow in the dim winter sun.

The account is intricate and under the surface there are strong feelings lurking, from fear to composure. Countless scetch-books show the artist‘s lively imagination and attempts at formulating a live narrative. The artist also looks inwards as he paints at Húsafell. There he paints croocked? Birch trees opposite the harsh forces of nature but in his letters he had likened them to the people and their difficult lives. The terrifying laws of nature then take over in paintings which depict people and animals fleeing from a volcanic eruption or a glacier outburst flood which recalls the forces of nature and its destructive power.