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Next Thursday, 20 May at 5 p.m. the exhibitions In the Collection of Imperfection and Vanitas, Still-life in Contemporary Icelandic Art will be opened in Hafnarhús.

Vanitas, Still-life in Contemporary Icelandic Art
Hafnarhús, Thursday 20 May at 5 p.m.
The Latin word vanitas means vanity, something that is empty, vain or valueless. In art history, vanitas is used for the artistic genre of still-life paintings that are symbolic of the futility of earthly life. Here we use the term for contemporary artworks that count as still-life, although many of them were not originally presented as such. Like traditional vanitas, they focus on our ordinary ways of life. The materials are ordinary and the construction of the works simple. By bringing them together under the heading of vanitas, the intent is to highlight the reminder of transience and renewal that is found in the works. Many of them focus on misplaced values but they are neither cynical nor pessimistic. They don’t insist on the futility of earthly pursuits but on the hope and necessity of care. Curated by Hafthor Yngvason

In the Collection of Imperfection – Unnar Örn J. Auðarson. Hafnarhús, Thursday 20 May at 5 p.m.
At his exhibition In the collection of Imperfection, Unnar Örn emphasises the value and import of the imperfect. In a review written by curator Markús Þór Andrésson he states:
“The Reykjavík Art Museum has invited Unnar Örn to exhibit in Hafnarhús and so he turns his attention to the institution as such, in a wide context as well as in terms of its inner workings. How is the culture of a society recorded, preserved and used to reflect the self image of the citizens and their history? Unnar Örn burrows through the museums of the City of Reykjavík which contain antiquities, art, architectural items, photographs, books and documents. They hold objects which most will recognise, our cultural heritage, but they hide much more than what is generally exhibited. The majority of the objects in the collections have never been seen by the public. In his investigation, Unnar Örn focuses especially on items that relate to individual history, to the histories of people who collected, recorded, created and left behind memories that ended up in the museums and are preserved there. The value of such collections was clear to the individuals who made them at the time but may be unclear to us today.“
In addition to bringing in little-known collections by individuals, held by the City of Reykjavík, Unnar Örn examines the image of the nation that authorities have chosen to project internationally at various World Fairs.
We may most recently recall the artist’s exhibition in Gallerí Ágúst last year which can be seen a preface to the exhibition that has now been set up in Hafnarhúsið.
The exhibition is a part of Reykjavik Arts Festival.

Sleep Light – Ráðhildur Ingadóttir
Ásmundarasafn, Thursday, 20 May at 6:30
The installation Sleep Light by Ráðhildur Ingadóttir comprises the dome of Ásmundarsafn, the sound of the space, a computer, a hand mirror, light projection and a shadow. The exhibition is on show unttil 17 April 2011.
Please notice that Reykjavik Art Museum invites guests a return bus-trip from Hafnarhús to Ásmundarsafn (Ásmundur Sveinsson's Sculpture Museum), the first bus leaving Hafnarhús at 6:30 p.m.

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