Icelandic Art & Culture
Art as a mirror of society and a forum for debate and experimentation
Iceland, like other nations, is experiencing a time of drastic change, and this entails a re-think of art, and adaptation to changes in social reality, technology and ideology. In essence, art is a mirror of society, which shows us how society is developing, asks questions, and is a forum for criticism and debate. Show me the work of your artists and I'll tell you what kind of country you live in, we may say, in a near-quotation.
Questions on the state of a nation – whether in technology, politics, sociology, environment, ethnology or history – are more clearly stated in the work of visual artists, musicians, architects, designers and writers, in theatre and film, than in the news reports of newspapers and periodicals.
In the international context, the Icelandic arts are typified by a wide range of subjects and diverse collaboration. Approaches tend to be multi-disciplinary; a musician may also be a photographer; a writer may be a visual artist; a filmmaker a musician; a video artist a poet. The concept of art cries out to be redefined.