Famous Artists from Iceland Artists

Famous Artists from Iceland

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List of the most popular artists from Iceland, listed alphabetically with photos when available. For centuries artists have been among the world's most important people, helping chronicle history and keep us entertained with one of the earliest forms of entertainment. Whether they're known for painting, sculpting, etching or drawing, the famous Icelander artists on this list have kept that tradition alive by creating renowned pieces of art that have been praised around the world. You can find useful information below about these notable Icelander artists, such as when they were born and where their place of birth was.

This list contains artists like Þórarinn B. Þorláksson and Muggur.

This list answers the questions, "Which famous artists are from Iceland?" and "Who are the most well-known Icelander artists?"

For further information on these historic Icelander artists, click on their names. If you're a fine art lover use this list of celebrated Icelander artists to discover some new paintings that you will enjoy.



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    Ólafur Elíasson
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    Olafur Eliasson is a Danish-Icelandic artist known for sculptures and large-scale installation art employing elemental materials such as light, water, and air temperature to enhance the viewer’s experience. In 1995 he established Studio Olafur Eliasson in Berlin, a laboratory for spatial research.more

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    • Birthplace: Denmark, Eurasia, Copenhagen
    • Associated periods or movements: Contemporary art
    • Nationality: Iceland, Denmark
    • Art Forms: Installation art
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    Dieter Roth
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    Dieter Roth was a Swiss artist best known for his artist's books, editioned prints, sculptures, and works made of found materials, including rotting food stuffs. He was also known as Dieter Rot and Diter Rot. The dark undertone and furious, obsessive energy of his work ultimately separated him from many ...more

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    • Birthplace: Europe, Hanover, Eurasia, Lower Saxony, West Germany, + more
    • Associated periods or movements: Op art, Fluxus
    • Nationality: Iceland, Germany
    • Art Forms: Sculpture, Installation art, Painting, Printmaking
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    Vilhjálmur Einarsson is an Icelandic former athlete, and triple-jump silver medalist at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia. Vilhjálmur grew up in the East-Icelandic fishing village of Reyðarfjörður and is the son of Einar Stefánsson and Sigríður Vilhjálmsdóttir. In 1956 Vilhjálmur set a ...more

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    • Birthplace: Fjarðabyggð, Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Painting
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    Erró is a postmodern artist. He studied art in Norway and in Italy, and has resided in Paris, Thailand and on the island of Formentera for most of his life. In 1989 he donated a large collection of his works to the Reykjavik Arts Museum, which has put part of it on permanent display and opened a website ...more

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    • Birthplace: Snæfellsbær, Iceland
    • Associated periods or movements: Pop art
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Painting
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    Louisa Matthíasdóttir

    Louisa Matthíasdóttir was an Icelandic-American painter. Matthíasdóttir was born in Reykjavík. She showed artistic ability at an early age, and studied first in Denmark and then under Marcel Gromaire in Paris. Her early paintings, dating from the late 1930s, established her as a leading figure in the ...more

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    • Birthplace: Reykjavik, Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland, United States of America
    • Art Forms: Painting
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    Heimir Björgúlfsson
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    Heimir Björgúlfsson is an Icelandic artist born in Reykjavík, Iceland in 1975. Heimir lives and works in Los Angeles, California. He holds a BFA from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and an MFA from the Sandberg Institute, both in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. He also studied Sonology at the Royal Conservatory ...more

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    • Birthplace: Reykjavik, Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Sculpture, Photography, Collage, Painting, Drawing
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    Muggur

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    Muggur
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Guðmundur Pétursson Thorsteinsson or Muggur was an Icelandic artist and film actor. He worked with watercolours, oil, charcoal and collages. Among his best-known works are the collage Seventh Day in Paradise and the children's book Dimmalimm. He played the lead role in Borgslægtens Historie which was ...more

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    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Einar Hákonarson is one of Iceland's best known artists. He is an expressionistic and figurative painter who brought the figure back into Icelandic painting in 1968. He is a pioneer in the Icelandic art scene and art education. He has been called “The crusader of the painting”, due to his involvement in ...more

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    • Birthplace: Reykjavik, Iceland
    • Associated periods or movements: Expressionism
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Mosaic, Sculpture, Painting, Printmaking, Drawing
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    Jóhannes Sveinsson Kjarval

    Johannes Sveinsson Kjarval was an Icelandic painter. He is by many considered one of the most important artists of Iceland. Born in poverty, he was adopted and as a young man worked as a fisherman. However, he spent every spare time drawing and painting and managed to learn basics from artist Ásgrímur ...more

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    • Birthplace: Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Painting
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    Jón Gunnar Árnason was an Icelandic sculptor. After studying at the University of Iceland Reykjavík Arts and Crafts from 1944 to 1946 and the School of Visual Arts, he graduated as an engineer from the Technical University of Reykjavik in 1952. From 1965 to 1967 he continued his studies of the Fine Arts ...more

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    • Birthplace: Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Sculpture
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    Ásgrímur Jónsson
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    Ásgrímur Jónsson was an Icelandic painter, and one of the first in the country to make art a professional living. He studied at the Royal Academy in Copenhagen between 1900 and 1903 and traveled widely after graduation. The subjects of his pictures are mostly the landscapes of his home country, ...more

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    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Painting
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    Jóhannes Geir Jónsson was an Icelandic painter. He was born and raised in Skagafjörður in northern Iceland. His father was a local schoolmaster; his much younger mother died from child labour when he was 9 years old. As a child Jóhannes demonstrated a talent for drawing and painting. When the time came, ...more

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    • Birthplace: Skagafjörður
    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Ragnar Axelsson

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    Ragnar Axelsson
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    Ragnar Axelsson, who also calls himself RAX, is an Icelandic photographer. He has been a staff photographer of Morgunblaðið since 1976. Ragnar has done work and stories for various agencies and magazines, shooting in Iceland, the Faroes, Greenland, Indonesia, Scandinavia, and Siberia. Ragnar has been ...more

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    • Birthplace: Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Nína Tryggvadóttir

    Nína Tryggvadóttir was born Jónína Tryggvadóttir in Seyðisfjörður, Iceland. Nína Tryggvadóttir is one of Iceland's most important abstract expressionist artists and one of very few Icelandic female artists of her generation. Mainly working in painting she also did paper collage, stained glass work, ...more

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    • Birthplace: Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Painting
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    Helgi Tómasson

    Helgi Tomasson is artistic director and principal choreographer for San Francisco Ballet, and a former professional ballet dancer. Since assuming leadership of San Francisco Ballet, he has helped transform the company from a respected regional troupe to one of the world's great classical ballet ...more

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    • Birthplace: Reykjavik, Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Júlíana Sveinsdóttir

    Júlíana Sveinsdóttir was one of Iceland's first woman painters and textile artists. Taught initially by prominent Icelandic artist Þórarinn B. Þorláksson, Sveinsdóttir settled in Denmark and returned to Iceland in the summers, the visits inspiring her landscape paintings, one of which won the Eckersberg ...more

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    • Birthplace: Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
    • Art Forms: Mosaic, Painting
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    Sigfús Eymundsson

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    Sigfús Eymundsson
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    Sigfús Eymundsson was an Icelandic photographer and bookseller. He practiced bookbinding from a young age and in 1857 he went to Copenhagen to study the profession. In 1861 he went to Norway where he studied photography. He then operated a studio in Copenhagen for a year and a half before moving back to ...more

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    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir

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    Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir
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    Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir is a photographer from Iceland who was named the "Web's Top Photographer" by the Wall Street Journal on July 29, 2006.more

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    • Birthplace: Iceland
    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Hallsteinn Sigurðsson

    Hallsteinn Sigurðsson is an Icelandic sculptor and visual artist. He is noted for his Nordic god sculptures, some of which are located at the Laxá Power Station in the north central part of the country and are arranged in the facility’s tunnels and vaults. Some twenty five of his sculptures are ...more

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    • Nationality: Iceland
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    Bjarni Jónsson

    Bjarni Jónsson was an Icelandic painter. He was notable for his paintings of old Icelandic fishing boats, many of which have been added to the National Museum of Iceland, Þjóðminjasafn Íslands. He studied with and was taught by esteemed Icelandic artists such as Kjarval and Ásgrímur Jónsson. He was an ...more

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    • Nationality: Iceland
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