Cristina Cotofana’s art draws her viewers into an intricate world where folklore and raw Icelandic landscapes are interwoven and viewed from the perspective of a squirrel, pixie or sprite. Unsuspecting treasures are highlighted in colors and standout in the contrast of black pen-strokes. Her strokes and use of negative space reveal her affinity for wood smithing, clay and working with wax.
On display are dozens of delicate drawings that reveal the shrub and grass lain landscapes which are often times overlooked in Iceland. We see an abundance of art based on the monumental aspects of nature in Iceland however rarely does an artist pay tribute to the smaller growth and life which is essential for erosion prevention and the base for young forests.
Environment is central in Cristina’s artwork and is repeatedly emphasized with unexpected elements of trash. In her honest portrayal of nature one cannot help but feel their participation. Romanian born artist Cristina Cotofana presents selected pen and ink drawings in the Hallstein Hall at the Museum Safnahús Borgarfjarðar in Borgarnes from March 10th to April 20th 2018. In 2008 Cristina graduated from the Academy of Arts in Hannover Germany. Following her studies and after working together with disabled artists, she moved to a remote farmstead in Bæjarsveit in Borgarfjörður in Iceland in 2011.
She has shown her artwork at the Agricultural Museum in Hvanneyri, Iceland in 2017 and organized group art exhibitions for regional artists at the Brugghús Steðji Brewery in Flókadal in 2016 and 2017.
Annually the Brugghús Steðji Brewery in Flókadal hosts exhibitions juxtaposing art in all forms amongst crates and vats of brew. The fluid blend of art and beer is a crowd pleaser and draws large numbers to it’s grassroots event. In Icelandic Steðji means anvil and refers to the rock formation next to the brewhouse. Although the Agriculture Museum is a heritage museum it has also been a venue for artists in the Borgarbyggð region.
The Safnahús Borgarfjarðar
The Gallery Hallsteinssalur features artists works based on the regional environment and inhabitants and is situated in the Borgarfjarðar Museum in Iceland. It has hosted dozens of exhibitions since it opened in 2013 and has shown work from the Icelandic artist Páll Guðmundsson from Húsafell, who was recently featured in National Geographic. He is known for his stone sculptures, hand crafted idiophone and his collaborations with the band Sigurrós. Other promising artists who have exhibited at the Museum Safnahús Borgarfjarðar are the contemporary artists Loga Bjarnasonar and wildlife photographer Sigurjón Einarsson.
The Museum also houses two permanent exhibitions. One is a photo exhibition of children and families throughout the century in Iceland who lived in the area and the other is a extensive collection of prepared birds that migrate this way. In the hallway there is a third exhibition which is about the french explorer Charcot, his crew and the story of their shipwreck off the shores of Borgarnes.
Michelle / Kunstportal