Arngunnur Ýr

Print print

Biography

ARNGUNNUR ÝR

Born: 1962, Reykjavik, Iceland

Education:

1990-1992 M.F.A.: Painting, Mills College, Oakland, CA
1989-1990 Gerrit Rietveldt Academie, Amsterdam, Holland
1984-1986 B.F.A.: Painting, San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, CA
1982-1984 Icelandic College of Arts and Crafts, Reykjavik, Iceland

Selected Solo and Two-Person Exhibitions:

2013 "Time in the Landscape: Ásgrímur Jonsson and Arngunnur Ýr," Listasafn Árnesinga museum, Hveragerdi, Iceland
VOLTA New York, presented by Marx & Zavattero, San Francisco, CA
2012 Reykjavik Art Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland
2011 Kit Schulte Contemporary Art, Berlin, Germany
Reykjavik Art Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland
2010 "Distant," Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco, CA
2008 "Euphora," Gallery Turpentine, Reykjavik, Iceland
"Upphafið, Transcendent," Reykjanesbær Art Museum, Iceland
2007 "Firmament," Gallerie Immanence, Paris, France
"Land I Saw," Hallgrimskirkja, Iceland
2006 "Firmament," Ampersand International Arts, San Francisco, CA
"Rapture is a Cool Place," (with Timothy Horn), Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, CA
2005 Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco, CA
"Firmament," (with Amanda Hughen,) Gallery Turpentine, Reykjavik, Iceland
2004 Hafnarborg Art Museum, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland
2003 Ventura College Art Gallery, Ventura, CA
2002 Ampersand International Arts, San Francisco, CA
Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, CA
2001 Gallery Saevar Karl, Reykjavik, Iceland
2000 Gerdarsafn Museum, Kopavogur, Iceland
1999 Museum of Modern Art Artists Gallery, San Francisco, CA
Gallery Saevar Karl, Reykjavik, Iceland
EFTA Gallery, Brussels, Belgium
1998 The Luggage Store, San Francisco, CA
1996 Hafnarborg Museum., Hafnarfjordur, Iceland
Icelandic University of Education Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland
1994 Living Art Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland
1993 Hulduholar Gallery, Mosfellssveit, Iceland
Show and Tell Gallery, San Francisco, CA
1991 Kjarvalsstadir Municipal Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland
1989 Gallery Nyhofn, Reykjavik, Iceland
1987 Media, San Francisco, CA
Living Art Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland
1985 Galleri TOI, Berlin, Germany

Selected Group Exhibitions:

2009 Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco, CA
2008 Þykkvibær, Iceland, with Georg Guðni
2007 "Landscapes, Rural and Urban Realities," Triton Museum of Art, Santa Clara, CA
2006 "Painting After 1980," National Gallery of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland
2004 "Paint," SFMOMA Artists Gallery, San Francisco, CA
2003 "Works on Paper," BACA, Berkeley, CA>
"Paint Junkies," Michael Martin Galleries, San Francisco, CA
2000 "Ecstasy 2000," Akureyri Museum, Akureyri, Iceland
1998 "Natura," Charlottenborg Museum, Copenhagen, Denmark
"Voyage," Nordic Heritage Museum, Seattle, WA
Claudia Chapline Gallery, Stinson Beach, CA
The Luggage Store, San Francisco, CA
"Anti Pessimismus," Downtown Artist's Society, Budapest, Hungary
1997 Coins Gallery, London, England
1995 "The Thin Clear Line," T. Higbee Gallery, San Francisco, CA
"Epicenter," Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, CA
"Exhibitionism San Francisco," Turlock Cultural Center, Turlock, CA
Paradise Gallery, Sarasota, FL
1993 "Windows," Fillmore Center, San Francisco, CA
1992 "MFA exhibition," Mills College Art Gallery, Oakland, CA
1990 Arts Commission Gallery, San Francisco, CA
1989 Gallery Nyhofn, Reykjavik, Iceland
Show and Tell Gallery, San Francisco, CA
1987 "Reconnaissance,” MEDIA, San Francisco, CA
1986 Mary Adress Gallery, San Francisco, CA
1985 Samkvaemispafinn, Egisstadir, Iceland
"Here and Now," Reykjavik Municipal Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland

Selected Public Collections:

Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, CA
Reykjavik Art Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland
University of Iceland Art Collection
Hafnarborg Art Museum, Hafnarfjordur, Iceland
Gerdarsafn Museum, Kopavogur, Iceland
OECD, Paris, France
EFTA, Brussels, Belgium
DeCode Genetics, Reykjavik, Iceland
Lookout Sculpture Park, New York, NY
Cargolux Airlines, Luxemburg
Icelandair
Bluebird Cargo, Keflavik, Iceland
Hitaveitan Power Corporation, Reykjavik, Iceland
Reykjanesbær, Iceland
Landsbankinn, Iceland
Seðlabankinn, Iceland
Arion Bank Reykjavik and Luxembourg
Gerduberg Cultural Center, Reykjavik, Iceland
City of Gardabaer, Iceland
RVK Savings Fund, Iceland
Geysir Center, Haukadalur, Iceland

Public Art Commissions:

2000 DeCode Genetics, Reykjavik, Iceland
1998 Dublin Elementary School, Dublin, CA
1992 Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, CA

Selected Awards and Grants:

2012 Ministry of Culture work grant for artists, Iceland
2005 Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant
2004-05 SFMOMA SECA Award nominee
2004 Menningarmalanefnd, Cultural Committee grant, Myndstef Grant
Fleishhacker Foundation nominee
2000 Ministry of Culture work grant for artists, Iceland
Svavar Gudnason and Asta Eiriksdottir Memorial Award
1996 Work grant from the city of Gardabaer, Iceland

Selected Bibliography:

2012 Arngunnur Ýr (264-page, full color book with essays), published by Reykjavik Art Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland
2010 Proppé, Jón, Arngunnur Ýr (catalogue), Reykjavik Art Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland
2009 Prior, Ginny, “The Six Questions,” Oakland Magazine, December
Gannon, Victoria, “Iceland Native Arngunnur Yr´s Modern Landscapes,” San Francisco Chronicle, December
2008 Ingolfsson, Adalsteinn, Transcendent (catalogue), Reykjanesbaer Art Museum, Keflavik, Iceland
2007 Sigurjonsdottir, Agnes, “Málar á Ál,” Séð og Heyrt, October
Ingolfsson, Einar Falur, “Veðrið hlýtur að hafa áhrif,” Morgunbladid, December
Jones, Shauna Laurel, “Only Locals See Them as Landscapes,” Grapevine, November
Johannsdottir, Soffia Gudrun, “Skiptust á vinnustofu og bíl hvor í sínu landi,” Morgunbladid, December
“Himnasýn í Hallgrímskirkju,” Helgarbladid, December
Svavarsdottir, Súsanna, “Á öldum flóðsins,” Nýtt Líf, November
2006 Sigurjonsdottir, Agnes, “Systrasaela,” Séð og Heyrt, June
2005 Sigurjonsdottir, Agnes, “Skín Skært,” Séð og Heyrt, October
Jonsdottir, Bergthora, “Léttir að geta einbeitt ser ad thvi ad mála, Arngunnur Ýr and Amanda Hughen at Terpentine,” Morgunbladid, October
Maloney, Patricia, Firmament: Amanda Hughen and Arngunnur Yr (catalogue), Turpentine Gallery, Reykjavik, Iceland
Porges, Maria, Going for Baroque (catalogue for “Rapture is a Cool Place” with Timothy Horn), Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, CA
2004 Jost, F. F. Stephan, When Beauty is Not Enough (catalogue), Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, CA
2003 Buuck, David, “Amanda Hughen and Arngunnur Yr at Ampersand,” Artweek, December/January
Mauro, Bruno, “Ampersand International Arts.”
2000 “Í landslagi hugans: Arngunnur Ýr Gylfadóttir í Gerdarsafni, Kopavogur Art Museum,” Morgunbladid, April
Saevar, Karl,” Gallerí,” Saevar Karl Magazine
Runolfsson, Halldor Bjorn, The End of Time (catalogue), Gerdarsafn, Kopavogur Art Museum, Kopavogur, Iceland
1998 Lausten, Thorbjorn, Natura (catalogue), Charlottenborg Art Museum, Copenhagen, Denmark
1996 Proppé, Jón, “An Artist of Two Worlds,” Iceland Review
Proppé, Jón, Iceland’s Burning Nature (catalogue), Hafnarborg Art Museum
1991 “Arngunnur Ýr á Kjarvalsstodum,” Morgunbladid, January
“Arngunnur Ýr: Fegurd og Leyndardomar,” Morgunbladid, January
“Ungir Listamenn í Sviðsljosi,” Morgunbladid, January
1989 “Energy and Courage,” Iceland Review, August
“Arngunnur Ýr Gylfadóttir,” Morgunbladid, August
“Heiðarleikinn er Lykilatridi,” Heimsmynd, Summer
1987 “Arngunnur Ýr Gylfadóttir,” Morgunbladid, August
Print print

Press Release

My works have always held a great degree of contradictions and opposing elements. Upon first inspection they seem calm and alluring, but on a closer glance, the viewer becomes aware of the tension created by the manipulating of the surface. The work seems to be coming apart, exposing a deep interior beyond the depicted image. In the newest works in pieces that I call National Parks I conjure up an almost idyllic setting that the viewer can immediately relate to. These paintings make references to places like Yosemite or Icelandic national parks, an image of an exquisite valley that we have come to recognize and claim in a sense as our own, and in the process, gain a sense of certainty, security and identity. It is an over-sentimentalizing of these iconic places, and upon a closer look one realizes that each image holds a mixture of several landmarks piled into one. The image is on the verge of imploding. The setting becomes  an overloaded torte of mountains, one weighing upon the next. There is a degree of suffocation in a work that at the same time is referencing a place that is supposed to be “light” and uplifting. Initially in my work I was interested in making phenomenological works that directly depicted my experiences in landscape. The newer works are still landscape based but have a more psychological approach, in a sense trying to understand the condition of the landscape and how we relate to it. The works are intentionally askew and often vortexed towards the center. They become very much about destabilisation, and how the viewer will navigate through the painting. The painting draws the viewer in, and refuses to let go.

  • For inquiries, please email Heather Marx Art Advisory at H[at]HMxAA[dot]com