Á Landinu

I first traveled to Iceland in 1997 through a year-long Fulbright Fellowship. I returned to Iceland for the first time since then in 2021 and immediately became immersed into the culture and landscape, picking up where I left off 24 years ago as if I had only been gone a few months.

 

I spent 10 days frantically travelling in and around the Reykjanes peninsula photographing everything I saw that felt both intimately familiar and yet spoke to me as uniquely Icelandic. I immediately formulated a new project concept revolving around the term “á landinu”. Although it literally translates as "on the land" even with my limited knowledge of the language and culture I perceived a subtle dual meaning. The phrase is also used to ask another Icelander returning home if they are "in the country". The subtext implies the unspoken cultural meaning of "in Iceland", or more specifically the place of birth for every Icelander. The homeland.

 

This connection to the land is uniquely Icelandic and for me is not conveyed by the dramatic magnificence of a waterfall, volcano or glacier, but by the more banal subjects of gas stations, industrial equipment and power plants. This project is a very new work in progress and I will continue to examine the Icelandic landscape as well as the people in the context of their deceptively ordinary daily lives.

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