Experts are planning to attempt to recreate Saltfiskstöflun, “Stacking Saltfish,” by Sigurjón Ólafsson. RÚV reports.
Sigurjón Ólafsson, born 1908, was a significant figure in Icelandic art history, working in both abstract and realistic forms. The original, which is now in poor condition, was the sculptor’s largest-ever work at the time of its creation.
The artwork has stood in the Mariner School’s courtyard for 70 years. The piece was a tribute to Icelandic women who worked in fish processing and it was considered unconventional and radical at the time.
The government purchased the work from Sigurjón in 1946, and it was cast and installed in 1953. Maintenance and care are the responsibility of Reykjavik City.
Birgitta Spur, Sigurjón’s widow and founder of the Sigurjón Ólafsson Art Museum (LSÓ), stated to RÚV: “I believe it is the last resort to try and obtain a 3D scan of the artwork for preservation. It seems its lifetime is over,” says Birgitta.
Experts who have evaluated the artwork agree that it is in poor condition and cannot be salvaged as it is.
Currently, the plan is to make a plastic mould from a 3D scan. A new sculpture will then be cast from the mould. Experts estimate that the entire project could take seven to eight months to complete.