An exhibition of the works of Icelandic artist Hildur Bjarnadóttir opens today in SAFN gallery in downtown Reykjavík.
Bjarnadóttir is best known for her artworks based on traditional Icelandic needlework and handicraft. In her most recent work, Bjarnadóttir uses the canvas to brainstorm about her theories on the male viewpoint of art history.
Unlike most artists who use the canvas as foundation for their paintings, Bjarnadóttir uses the canvas itself and its historical meaning for her artwork.
At first sight, Bjarnadóttir’s artworks appear as monochrome paintings, linen canvases painted in bright colors. But by taking a closer look it becomes clear that behind each painting lies work based on an ancient textile tradition. Bjarnadóttir weaves the canvases herself, as explained in a press release.
“Bjarnadóttir’s works are paintings without pictures, the handicraft and its references to the history of craft and art as well as male and female culture is the artwork,” it says in the press release.
Hildur Bjarnadóttir was born in 1969 and studied visual arts at the Pratt Institute in New York. Her works have been exhibited in the USA, Canada, Germany, Poland, Norway, Sweden and in all the main galleries in Iceland.
In 2001 Bjarnadóttir was awarded with the Betty Bowen Memorial awards and in 1999 with the American Scandinavian Society of New York awards. This year she received the Icelandic Medal for Visual Arts.