Canadian and Icelandic artists create future visions of land in The Wildflower

August 29 – November 8th
Hafnarborg — Centre of Culture and Fine Art, Iceland


Asinnajaq, Where you go, I follow, 8 x 10 ft, digital image on Poly Sheer, 2020. Image courtesy of Hafnarborg

Gathering in the field

The conceptual framework for The Wildflower is the gallery as an open field. Artists from Iceland, Canada and the North cultivate new space for a dynamic collision of climate activism, interspecies ecologies, feminism and craft-based practice in contemporary art. Moving through Hafnarborg’s expansive exhibition space, themes of reclamation, transformation and power emerge and swirl in the air like pollen. Uncertainty, like moss, creeps across a shifting bedrock of the past, and present and future.

As curators, we began this project with a desire to look more closely — see more clearly and with a new perspective — our changing landscape through the eyes of contemporary artists from Canada, Iceland and the North. Over the course of time, the exhibition grew naturally into a series of collaborations with artists who use natural materials, reimagine craft practices and resource their personal histories.

Participating artists are Arna Óttarsdóttir (IS), Asinnajaq (CA), Eggert Pétursson (IS), Emily Critch (CA), Jón Gunnar Árnason (IS), Justine McGrath (CA), Katrina Jane (US/IT), Leisure (CA), Nína Óskarsdóttir (IS), Rúna Thorkelsdóttir (IS) and Thomas Pausz (IS/FR). Curated by Becky Forsythe (IS/CA) and Penelope Smart (CA).

Follow online for upcoming virtual and public programming
INSTAGRAM: @thewildflower.exhibition


Installation view, The Wildflower, 2020. Image courtesy of Hafnarborg.

The Wildflower focuses a futuristic lens on that which is deeply familiar – our delicate flora clinging to rock – as it takes root in new stories. The gallery is an active space for new imaginings in powerful union with intimate qualities of nature – innocence, colonization, gentleness, force – that are being written, heralded, in our own time.


Justine McGrath, Emotion Armour, wearable stained glass, sizes variable, 2020. Image courtesy of Hafnarborg.

A full exhibition publication features new essays by D’Arcy Wilson (CA), Inga Björk Margrétar Bjarnadóttir (IS) and Andri Snær Magnason (IS).


Penelope Smart

Becky Forsythe
+354 865 6978

Strandata 34
Hafnarfjördur 585 5790
Hafnarborg is an accessible venue.