EXPORTED: Erin Elyse Burns at The Westfjords Artist Residency in Thingeyri, Iceland

Seattle-based artist Erin Elyse Burns is spending some time at The Westfjords Artist Residency and being a photo / video artist, we couldn’t wait to see what she would create in the gorgeous landscape of Iceland. Enjoy today’s EXPORTED, part 1 with Erin as she shares photos exploring the body within landscape as well as shares some behind-the-scenes shots of what happens at a residency, including photo shoots at 2 am.  Thanks for sharing, Erin! You are inspiring complete wanderlust over here.

The Westfjords Artist Residency is in its inaugural year – the pilot program. After this session, the founders will develop year round programming that involves one May/October session with a large group of artists like now, and then smaller longer residencies throughout the year (no residencies will be held during the high tourist season of June – August.) The residency founders are Samantha Albert, Janne Kristensen and Wouter Van Hoeymissen. Janne and Wouter are a couple from Denmark and Belgium, respectively, and have lived in the village of Thingeyri for 10 years. Samantha is from Lichtenstein and Seattle, and just moved to Iceland after 8 years of regular visits to the area.

The first cohort of residents are from around the world: Iceland, New York, Maine, Washington, Arizona, Japan, England, Germany and Canada. It is a cross disciplinary group of ten artists practicing design, architecture, sound art, photography, video, installation, painting, fiber arts, ethnobotanical illustration, volcanology and poetry. The artists names are: David Bruce, Erin Elyse Burns, Mary Fran Cardamone, Porsteinn Eyfjord, Adam Hilborn, Maki Kaoru, Julie Sasse, Yasuaki Tanago, Alex C. Todaro, and Fabian Wadsworth.

The images below are part of in- progress work in which I am investigating relationships to the landscape through physical interactions. I am struck by how often the land looks animal-like. Grass becomes the breathing fur of a large cat, mounds of kelp are reminiscent of Icelandic myths of sea monsters. And the blue of the near constant light! The darkest hour is currently about 2am but the sky is never black and the phases of light move so slowly and gradually that the changes are almost difficult to perceive until they happen. 4am light looks a bit like 11am in Seattle.

Also included are a few “behind the scenes” images in Thingeyri (the village has a population of about 250 people during the height of summer), the residency workspaces, living areas and the residents at work or attending residency events.

my bedroom, light at 2 am

my bedroom, light at 9 am

Historical photograph of local villagers in 1897

One of the residency’s houses / work studios

Residents at work in one of the studios

Living room of shared housing

N1, the only store in Thingeyri

Four residents and Founder, Samantha Albert, in Thingeyri’s tourist viking village at 2 am

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