Sunday, May 22, 2011

Faxi Waterfall

While at the Faxi Waterfall in the Golden Circle we witnessed a four wheeler stuck at the bottom of the falls. Yes, the waterfall was beautiful but watchin the four wheeler struggle was hilarious

Nancy Shares Her Thoughts!

The Blue Lagoon

The Blue Lagoon is a the tourist geothermal spa in Grindavík on the Reykjanes Peninsula, southwestern Iceland. We went on our last day in Iceland, and it was way more different that I expected. I wouldn't say I am a germaphoebe but I love hand sanitizer. I am also not a big swimmer. Me + Water aren't really friends. I would choose a shower over a bath any day. I just want to give you all a heads up about who I am before I tell you about my experiences at the Blue Lagoon.

It was not the nicest day out and knowing that I was about to be half naked in the 50 degree weatehr didn't put my in the best mood. Also knowing I was about to be showering naked in front of total strangers was was a very out of comfort zone experiences for me. Before entering the Blue Lagoon you have to shower naked and get rid of all dirt and make up on your body. This was comforting knowing I was going to be in a a large body of water with a group of strangers. Luckily for us self conscious Americans they did have private showers!

Laura, Ashley, asd Myself quickly ran towards to Lagoon and it was much different then i could ever had expected. A large body of a thick creamy water surrounded by lava rocks. This place was defiantly way cooler then I imagined. We basically ran in due to the pure excitement of it all, and the fact that we were freezing. After awkwardly getting used to the water we put on a face mask provided by the Lagoon. This place is not the best place for germaphies since people are using there hands to get the masks out of communal bins and washing their faces in the water. But hey WHEN IN ICELAND DO WHAT THE TOURISTS DUE!
Icelanders don't really go to the Blue Lagoon and have smaller geothermic spas locally in neighborhoods.

After getting used to the people, it was a lot of fun. The only part that made it weird was the House Music and gamers everywhere due to a conference that was happening that week in Iceland. Overall we all had a lot of fun trying something new! It was a nice end to the trip. It was an awesome way to relax, and have a little spa relaxation during our spring break!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


I am in art history minor from New York, so my love for galleries is very dear to my heart. We went to a contemporary art gallery in Iceland with some very unique art. I actually took a lot of video from this gallery so please just see the below posts. They are in the following order. The art itself. Then Thorlakur Einarsson, the Gallery explaining the art, and then finally the students interacting with the art and their reactions to the show
The below is direct from I8s website explains the show in detail.


Three Parts Whole features new work by noted Icelandic artists Finnbogi Pétursson, Hrafnkell Sigurdsson, and ívar Valgardsson. The work is diverse, and is meant to be so. Pétursson’s suspended video camera swinging like a pendulum as it briefly displays its own “view” on a monitor, as well as his time-based drawing on the wall; Sigurdsson’s enthralling photographs of sculpture-like chunks of ice and snow fallen from automobiles and his photographic construction displaying distant mountains, the sky, and an exploding volcano; and Valgardsson’s spare yet captivating wall works made of aluminum, along with a large crumpled ball fashioned from a single sheet of paper painted blue, reveal distinct, highly idiosyncratic artistic sensibilities. These distinct sensibilities cohere in an exhibition full of correspondences, some obvious, and others much more subtle. Related colors, shapes, textures, and motion (whether actual or implicit) course through the exhibition. Compact and contained works suggest distances and immensities: the sky, horizon lines, land formation and convulsion, the ceaseless rhythm of waves. Works dealing in physicality, tactility, and optical power are also marvelously evocative, and able to induce rapt contemplation. On one level a celebration of pure visual pleasure, Three Parts Whole also celebrates the multifaceted “conversation” that develops between the participating artists.

This exhibition also has an unusual history. Several months ago Börkur Arnarson from i8 Gallery contacted me with a novel proposal. He was interested in a three-person show of Finnbogi Pétursson, Hrafnkell Sigurdsson, and ívar Valgardsson, and wanted an outside curator to look freshly at their work, and figure out how that work might not only fit, but also thrive, in the same exhibition. I readily agreed, and decided early in the process to opt for new work: my “fresh approach” would engage fresh and untested works. Among a number of “imaginary” works by ívar Valgardsson (explorative virtual works, rendered in Photoshop, that may or may not eventually be realized) I was struck by a large, ungainly, yet oddly elegant blue ball, which suggested both a big rock and a crumpled piece of paper tossed into a waste basket. Valgardsson has now realized that sculpture for this exhibition, and it has a peculiar power and mysterious presence, with its vibrant color, pronounced surface tactility, numerous indentations and depths, and conflation of inside and outside, including suggestions of water and sky. That ball-like sculpture connects—not overtly, but instead subtly and poetically—with Finnbogi Pétursson’s wall drawing for which he used a motorized pen called a SpyroGyro to make an undulating mesh of circular lines, airy and spare in parts, and in other parts much more dense and impacted. Pétursson’s drawing suggests reverberating sound waves (this from an artist famous for working with sound) and also hints at horizon lines and distant geological formations. Hrafnkell Sigurdsson photographs of ice and snow fallen from cars have a surprising sculptural complexity, while pronounced, yet subdued, color tones make them seem almost painterly. In the meantime, Sigurdsson’s nine photographs of icy debris also suggest a horizon line, and an eventful landscape stretching far off into the distance.

Sigurdsson is also exhibiting a doctored and mediated photo construction, concerning the hyper-mediated Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption of 2010, in which a seemingly serene shot of snowy mountains and a blue sky (the whole image has been manipulated by the artist) can be opened to reveal stupendous billowing smoke as captured in a stock photograph. Call it a window of sorts, a faux window that reveals a stylized volcanic eruption, a manipulated view of a geological event that quickly turned into a global media frenzy, and it is one of numerous nature-culture collisions in the exhibition. Still, Sigurdsson’s manipulated work is majestic, awe-inspiring, and transportive, and retains an aura of a nature-based sublime. Speaking of nature-culture collisions, ívar Valgardsson has enlisted a common building material (corrugated aluminum) for his gray and blue wall works. Diverting this common material into a new context, his concrete works seem curiously vast: rigid pieces of metal that suggest distant horizons, rolling waves, the gray weather that often buffets Iceland, a deep blue sky, the reverie one sometimes feels looking up at the heavens.

Implicit motion and pent energy abound in this exhibition, in contained works that also seem really open and alert to powerful, world-shaping forces. Motion becomes explicit in Finnbogi Pétursson’s swinging video camera, rhythmically arcing from one side of the room to the other, over and over, while intermittently displaying what it “sees” on a monitor as sharp yet fleeting visual events. Pétursson’s swinging camera suggests a grandfather clock from the old days, mechanically swinging and swinging and keeping track of the time, but it has many more connotations as well. Most of what it sees and experiences is hidden, but some of what it sees suddenly comes into focus: flash insights, quick clarity, sudden illumination. This back and forth pendulum motion is restless and agitated, but also hypnotic and oddly comforting, suggesting rhythms of departure and arrival, exploration and return. As the tide advances on one shore it withdraws from another, only to later reverse course. As one civilization flourishes another declines, but that too will change in due time. A child’s seesawing day swings many times between happiness and despair. The stock market rises and investors are thrilled but then the bottom drops out and investors get walloped. Optimistic new governments promising reform come into power, but then lose their way amidst compromise and corruption. One’s own most incandescent breakthroughs are inevitably followed by enervation and confusion, but there will be more breakthroughs later. Pétursson’s work is elemental, but also visually and humanly complex, and the same goes for the other works in this exhibition. For me, as the curator, it has been a special pleasure and an inspiration working with these three artists on the development and completion of the exhibition Three Parts Whole.

Icelandic artists Finnbogi Pétursson, Hrafnkell Sigurdsson, and ívar Valgardsson.

Ashley having fun with the art by Finnbogi Pétursso

Ashely and Laura's reaction to the I8 Gallerys show
Ashley came down with a cold in Iceland which was bad for Ashley, but funny for us!

Inside Jokes

While in Iceland our group had a couple of inside jokes and one of them made fun of me! Well I was the one that shared this fact with everyone and since I kept on reapeating this event it became a nice little part of our trip. One day while Laura, Ashley, and myself were ate the grocery store I stumblred upon this hidden jem...COOL AMERICAN DORITOS. Yes, they were just ranch Doritos, but they had an epic name! I decided to eat these chips back in my hotel rooms and all of a sudden I felt extremely sleepy and passed outt! I told my group and they all thought it was a little funny. The next day I decided to eat Paprika chips and passed out again. Apparently I got the idis from these chips. The next night I had another bag of Cool Americans and passed out. The joke of Iceland became me passing out due to my addiction to potato chips. This hasn't happened yet in America, so maybe Iceland+Exotic Chips=Sleepy Time?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Ashley..Dancing with a Polar Bear..IN ICELAND!

Reykjanes, Ísland

This spot was my absolute favorite place in Iceland. We went to this cliff right before we left for the airport back home. The area is covered in rocks and deep blue water. On the side was a magnificent lighthouse. Just staring at the vast ocean was an unbelievable experience. it is hard to describe but was a feeling of bliss/calm being in this location in the world.


That is Icelandic for Hello!! My name is Stacey and I am graduating senior. For my last college spring break I decided to do something a little go to Iceland with my professor. This may not sound like the typical college girls spring break, and especially not a senior, but it was the best spring break I could ever ask for. I never thought I would go to Iceland, and love it! PS that is my at Cafe Oliver in Iceland. I bought that rabbit fur hat at a local shop. Best purchase ever!