June 3, 2007 - Artangel - Artangel’s First International Commission : RONI HORN
June 3, 2007

Artangel’s First International Commission : RONI HORN

Artangels First International Commission

Stykkishólmur, Iceland
Opens May 2007


For the past 25 years, the work of Roni Horn has been intimately involved with the distinctive geography, geology, climate and culture of Iceland.

In collaboration with Artangel, Horn has developed VATNASAFN|LIBRARY OF WATER as a multi-faceted long-term installation and community centre in the town of Stykkishólmur on the western coast of Iceland north of Reykjavík. VATNASAFN|LIBRARY OF WATER is situated in Stykkishólmurs former library building, overlooking the ocean on one side and the harbour and town on the other.

In the main viewing room, Horn has replaced stacks of books with a constellation of glass columns containing glacial water from around Iceland gathered from the glacial tongues of Vatnajökull and the glaciers of Hofsjökull, Langökull and Snaefellsjökull. A customised floor is inscribed with both Icelandic and English words describing the state of the weather – or the mood of the viewer. Through the watery columns natural light is refracted and reflected onto the floor creating what Horn describes as a kind of lighthouse in which the viewer becomes the lighthouse in which the view becomes the light. Absorbing the visitor into a world of weather, water and light, the room also doubles as a space for reflection and a place for community activity from writers readings to womens chess clubs, yoga classes and town meetings.

VATNASAFN|LIBRARY OF WATER also houses Weather Reports You, an ongoing collection of testimonies from people living in the locality, an alternative kind of weather reporting inspired by the site of the building as the place where the recording of meteorological conditions in Iceland was first initiated. Weather Reports You is also a publication and can be visited online at www.libraryofwater.is

VATNASAFN|LIBRARY OF WATER also launches an annual writers residency program with writers invited from the fields of fiction, non-fiction, poetry or screenwriting or from the natural sciences. The first writer in residence will be the Icelandic fiction writer Guorún Eva Minervudóttir.

Horns exhibition MY OZ is at Reykjavík Art Museum until 19 August 2007. See www.artmuseum.is for further information.

For further information contact Janette Scott on 020 7713 1400 or janette@artangel.org.uk

VATNASAFN|LIBRARY OF WATER is funded and supported by The Town of Stykkishólmur, The Ministry of Education, Science and Culture and The Ministry of Communications. The production of VATNASAFN/LIBRARY OF WATER and its associated programmes have been made possible by the generous support of: the Icelandic Parliament, FL Group, N1 and Straumur-Burdaras Investment Bank. With additional generous support from The VATNASAFN/LIBRARY OF WATER CIRCLE: Louise Bourgeois, Kathy and Richard S. Fuld Jr, Agnes Gund and Daniel Shapiro, LUMA Foundation, Anna Lísa Sigurjónsdóttir & Hreioar Már Sigurosson and those who wish to remain anonymous; Artangel International Circle: The Cranford Collection, Guy and Andrea Dellal, Joe and Marie Donnelly, Mala and Oliver Haarmann, David and Sarah Kowitz, Jennifer McSweeney, Catherine and Franck Petitgas, Pascale Revert and Peter Wheeler, Cora and Kaveh Sheibani, Iwan and Manuela Wirth, Anita and Poju Zabludowicz and Michael Zilkha; and VATNASAFN/LIBRARY OF WATER Patrons: Cees & Inge de Bruijn, Fifth Floor Foundation, Steinunn Jónsdóttir, Dominique Levy & Robert Mnuchin, L&M Arts, Mary Moore, Howard & Cindy Rachofsky, The Pritzker Traubert Family Foundation, Emily Rauh Pulitzer, The Pulitzer Foundation, Alannah Weston and Sylvie Winckler. Thanks for support also from the Icelandic Tourist Board and Icelandair. The Writers Residency Programme is supported by The Annenberg Foundation. Weather Reports You is published by Steidl in association with Artangel.

Over the past decade, Artangel has built an international reputation as a pioneering producer of highly ambitious projects by contemporary artists across a wide range of different disciplines to realise the full potential of their ideas in the best possible circumstances Artangel is supported by Arts Council England, London, The Company of Angels, Artangel International Circle and Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. www.artangel.org.uk

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