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From top left; Dr. Angela Rawlings, Hildur Bjarnadóttir, Mari Bø, Sigrún Hlín Sigurðardóttir & Daria Testoedova.

The 100-year anniversary of the Icelandic association in Norway is celebrated with the first interdisciplinary festival “Isdager”. This event consists of several events, one of such is an exhibition “Since the First Encounter”, curated by Daria Testoedova (MA Curatorial Practice student). This anniversary exhibition will showcase a variety of talent that stems from the Icelandic and Norwegian coexistence and historical kinship. In the halls of Gamle Munch, you can see the artworks created by nine Icelandic, Norwegian and Sámi women, whose lives have intertwined between the two distinct localities who continue old traditions through multi-media storytelling.
 
The Old Munch Museum and the exhibition Since the First Encounter” present several artists, who have been in one way, or another connected to Icelandic University of the Arts:
 
a rawlings is a mineral, plant, animal, person, place, or thing. Also known as Dr. Angela Rawlings, they are a Canadian-Icelandic interdisciplinary artist-researcher whose primary focus revolves around exploring languages. Through the years the artist has been taking their inspiration from the lands of Iceland and Norway while utilizing sensorial poetries, vocal and contact improvisation, theatre of the rural, and conversations with landscapes. They are currently a professor across a variety of different departments of the Icelandic University of Arts.
 
Hildur Bjarnadóttir is an Icelandic artist. In her work, she investigates issues of belonging, ecology, place and cohabitation with animals and plants on a small piece of land in the south of Iceland where she lives and works. The plants on the piece of land function as recording devices which take in information from the ecological and social systems. Hildur records this information by extracting the color from the plants which she uses to dye wool and silk. Hildur is a professor for several consecutive years in the Fine Art department of the Icelandic University of Arts.
 
Mari Bø is an interdisciplinary artist working with sounds, textures and movements connected to the body. Mari is specifically interested in exploring nuances and facets existing within her own body, using her art as a tool to understand and challenge herself. In her work, she often explores concepts related to gender and sexuality, and how gendered norms and ‘codes of conduct’ can influence how we, as a society, perceive and police bodies. Mari Bo has recently graduated from the MA Fine Arts in 2020.
 
Sigrún Hlín Sigurðardóttir is an Icelandic artist, who works primarily with textiles, text and drawing, where she plays with the fine line between crafts and arts. Sigrún’s work is concerned with the human connection to images, symbols and the material world, in the past, present and future. In 2014 Sigrun has graduated from the Icelandic University of Arts with a BA in the Fine Arts.
 
Lastly, Daria Testoedova is a Buryat-Mongolian indigenous curator, art historian and researcher. Her initial interest was in the anthropological and ethnographic view of the fine arts of her indigenous Siberian roots. With her work, she delves into the cultural fabrics and explores the Anthropocene of the localities. Through her work, Daria explores topics like indigenous knowledge, kinship, belonging, folklore, and mythology. 
 
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“Since the First Encounter” will open on the 16th of October in Gamle Munch Museum in Oslo, Norway. Additionally, it will have a special opening for the “Isdager festival” on the 19th of October in the same location. This exhibition is a fusion of ancient mythologies, which were written by male storytellers and contemporary expressions through the female gaze, where artists push the boundaries of imagination to unveil new narratives of kinship, belonging, and collective consciousness. The presented narrative will bridge past and present, Iceland and Norway, by giving women and nature agency.
 
Link to the event HERE.