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Listasafn Íslands - National Gallery of Iceland.
The National Gallery of Iceland (Listasafn Íslands, list=art) has several exhibition halls on three floors exhibiting various art forms, both Icelandic and international art. The main emphasis is on 19th and 20th century art. I have found the exhibitions both intriguing and provocative. They are well worth a visit when you are exploring down-town Reykjavík.
The National Gallery was founded in 1884, but has only been in its current location since 1988. It was founded in Copenhagen by Björn Bjarnason, but in 1916 The Icelandic Parliament decided on making it into a department at The National museum. It changed locations a couple of times. The current building housing the Gallery used to be an icehouse built in 1916. In this building there used to be a discotheque called Glaumbær.
On ground-floor there is a gallery-art store and on first floor there is Café Kaffitár.
It is open daily from 10-17 and closed Mondays.
As with most other museums and galleries it is not allowed to take pictures inside the National Gallery of Iceland.
My cousin, Pétur Thomsen, just opened his photographic exhibition there (September 16th, 2010). It is called Imported landscape and will be open until 7.11.2010. I recommend going there, the photos are amazing!
Listasafn Reykjavíku - Kjarvalsstadir
Kjarvalsstaðir museum is devoted to modern art of both Iceland and Internationally.
It has permanent exhibitions of works by Johannes S Kjarval, known as one of most beloved painters in Iceland.
This museum even has a café and a shop. The building is named after the painter, and opened for the general public 1973.
It was quite enjoyable, the weather was crisp and a little snowy. It was pleasant to walk through
National Gallery of Iceland
My Lonely Planet was wrong. I did not get an eerie and creepy impression from this museum at all and there is no longer any admission charge, so I highly recommend a quick visit to Iceland's main art gallery located alongside the eastern edge of the pond right next to the Frikirkjan. It's a very modern building with elevators and excellent handicapped access, a Kaffitar if you need a pick-me-up, and when I was there in April of 2007, a great exhibit of two Icelandic artists, Jón Engilberts and Jóhann Briem.
Listasafn (National Gallery of Iceland)
This gallery houses the most important of Iceland's contributions to art. Like most things in Iceland it is small by the standards of National Gallery's in other countries but has an interesting collection of art.
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Icelandic National Gallery
For the art fanatics out there, this is the place to catch touring art shows and to see the best of original Icelandic artists. This is a really small museum, able to be completed in about 30-45 minutes, but is nice to visit because of the local artisry, which I would imagine can not be viewed many other places in the world. Here were my two favorite paintings.
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