Writing on the Wall

Krot og Krass

Travelling through the small towns of Iceland, amidst the formidable mountains and tempestuous seas, you might come across a stark black and white mural. Made of hard lines and indecipherable squiggles, its symbols still suggest a hidden meaning. There’s purpose to every squiggle, intent behind every tangled knot on the wall. Ask a local about the wall and if you look friendly, they might take the time to explain to you the story behind it, the ancient script detailing the concise history that inspired the work of art, perhaps based in the town’s long history. While the paint’s only just dried, the mural is based on centuries of tradition, folk art, and local culture. In fact, it’s the work of the duo Krot og Krass (roughly translated as Doodle and Scrawl).

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All Roads Out of Reykjavík Likely Closed Tomorrow

weather warning


Extreme weather will likely close all roads in and out of Reykjavík tomorrow starting at noon, RÚV reports. Most of the proposed closures in the capital area are expected to last until Wednesday afternoon. Road closures due to violent winds and heavy snowfall are expected throughout the country on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Road and Coastal Administration has published a list of roads that may be closed tomorrow due to weather. The road closures include Route 1 (the Ring Road), both toward South Iceland and West Iceland. Route 41, which connects the capital region to Keflavík Airport, is also expected to be closed from noon tomorrow until 1.00pm on Wednesday.

Airport staff and rescue teams on standby

Ásdís Ýr Pétursdóttir, Icelandair’s PRO, stated that the airline was considering what effect the road closure and weather will have on flights at Keflavík Airport, but that it was too early to say. Search and rescue representatives have met with authorities to prepare for the coming weather.

Residents and tourists alike are advised against travelling in Iceland tomorrow. Weather and travel conditions are updated regularly on Safetravel’s website.

Hildur Guðnadóttir Nominated for Golden Globe

Icelandic composer Hildur Guðnadóttir’s music for Joker has newly secured her a Golden Globe nomination for best original score. Hildur’s music for the screen has been in the spotlight lately: the composer won an Emmy award in September for her soundtrack for HBO miniseries Chernobyl, which was composed using field recordings from a nuclear power plant.

Joker has snagged four nominations in total – the others are for Best Motion Picture in the drama category; Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture (Drama) for Joaquin Phoenix; and Best Director (Motion Picture). Hildur’s fellow nominees in the score category are Alexandre Desplat for Little Women, Randy Newman for Marriage Story, Thomas Newman for 1917, and Daniel Pemberton for Motherless Brooklyn.

The awards ceremony will take place on January 5 in Beverly Hills, California, hosted by Ricky Gervais.

EGOT on the way?

Hildur has been raking in recognition for her soundtrack work in recent months. Besides the aforementioned Emmy, the composer was also named Television Composer of the Year at the annual World Soundtrack Awards in October. Last month, she received a Grammy nomination for her work on Joker.

Considering the well-deserved attention, some are speculating it is likely that Hildur will also receive an Oscar nomination this year. This would put the musician well on the way to the coveted EGOT distinction – winning an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony award.

Iceland Review interviewed Hildur recently about her work on Joker and Chernobyl.

Extreme Weather Across Iceland Into Wednesday

weather warning

The Icelandic Met Office advises against travel in Iceland tomorrow and Wednesday, as extreme winter weather is forecast across most of the country. Southwest, West, and North Iceland will see the worst conditions, which include blizzards and strong winds, while those in East Iceland can also expect fairly strong winds. Weather is expected to improve by early Thursday morning.

Stormy conditions are expected tomorrow in the Reykjavík area starting around 4.00pm, with winds reaching 20-28 metres per second. In Southwest Iceland, conditions will be similar, with wind speeds of 20-28 metres per second. Road closures are expected in the area from tomorrow afternoon. Wind speeds will decrease in the region early on Wednesday but remain high under Eyjafjöll at 23-33m/s.

Road closures expected

In West Iceland, north of Reykjavík, winds of 20-28m/s are expected, while further north in Breiðafjörður fjord, wind speeds could reach 23-30m/s, with blowing snow limiting visibility. The Westfjords and Northwest Iceland are expected to receive heavy snowfall and winds of 23-33m/s, with snowstorms limiting visibility and transport disturbances expected.

Stormy conditions are also expected in the Eyjafjörður area in North Iceland, with conditions improving as one heads east. The Northeast and East of the country will only have slightly better weather, however, still experiencing blizzard conditions and strong winds. Southeast Iceland will likely experience less precipitation, though violent wind gusts will make driving dangerous, particularly on Wednesday morning.

As is usual at this time of year, the Central Highlands are inaccessible to travellers.

Flying debris likely

Flying debris is likely, and construction workers are encouraged to secure construction sites. Residents are also asked to secure outdoor furniture and belongings. Travelling is not advised while the weather warning is in effect.

As of writing, road.is reports snow showers across South and West Iceland, and roads are reported to be snow-covered, icy, or slippery across the country. Those in Iceland are advised to keep tabs on travel conditions on the Safetravel website.

Five Arrested in Fatal Incident in Capital Area

missing woman

A man died yesterday afternoon after a three-story fall from a residential building in a Reykjavík suburb, RÚV reports. Five others were arrested following the incident and have been in interrogations since this morning. The incident is being investigated as a criminal case.

Police Superintendent Margeir Sveinsson told RÚV shortly before noon that the interrogations would likely stretch into the afternoon. Police are considering whether to keep the men in custody or institute a travel ban. Margeir would not comment on whether police suspect the incident to be murder.

The five men in custody, as well as the deceased, are all foreign nationals from the same country, though police have not made public which country that is.

Update 09.12.19 4.00pm: Four of the five men have been released, while the fifth, around 50 years of age, will remain in custody until December 19. A press release from Capital Area Police states that the investigation intends to determine how the man fell from the building, and the man in custody is suspected of involvement in the death. The deceased man was in his 50s, and all six of the men are Lithuanian nationals.