Beyond Olafsfjordur

Leila Morrissey
EXHIBITION  RUNS
   
September
   
29
 -  
October
   
10
In September 2014 Leila Morrissey was awarded an Ian Potter Cultural Trust grant, which allowed her to travel to Northwest Iceland on a one-month residency at Listhus in the remote fishing town Olafsfjordur. Leila Morrissey’s series of photographs from her time spent in Iceland show how this vast and varied land is almost a sculptural form.

INFORMATION

Through her lens Morrissey captures how the monumental and majestic mountains stand like timeless pillars having lasted for millennia. Yet her work also shows how this place is in a state of constant transformation, snow and ice forming, then melting away, repositioning and moving to other parts of the icy landmass and then again being recycled, reforming and revolving. This land stands still and at the same time constantly changes.

This land stands still and at the same time constantly changes. Morrissey’s alluring images, select and frame vistas that highlight the sense of this being a place of wilderness and yet through the lens of her camera the artist also shows hints of the habitation of people- most of hidden out of sight, present only via their structures of shelter that sit within the omnipresent environment. 

Morrissey’s photography allows us to explore this far away place, this land on the opposite side of the world, and yet because of the way these are portrayed we feel an intimacy with what we are looking at, the small hints of human populations such as houses or livestock in a field remind us that this is home for those who reside in the remote interior of this unique place. To alter our perception and accentuate the detail of the surfaces in each photographic window, Morrissey takes away the marker of colour and shows the various locations in black and white. Through this technique the dramatic contrasts of the snow filled valleys, or the lip of waves, or even simply the outline of a fish on sand, are more defined and indeed sculptural. 

The artist adds to the artwork that is the environment itself. As our eyes move across these gradients of black, to grey, to white, shapes or blocks of one tone appear and we are led to focus on the composition of the entire image as much as we are intrigued by the stories being told silently through these images. 

Jacob Hoerner

 August 2016

Through her lens Morrissey captures how the monumental and majestic mountains stand like timeless pillars having lasted for millennia. Yet her work also shows how this place is in a state of constant transformation, snow and ice forming, then melting away, repositioning and moving to other parts of the icy landmass and then again being recycled, reforming and revolving. This land stands still and at the same time constantly changes.

This land stands still and at the same time constantly changes. Morrissey’s alluring images, select and frame vistas that highlight the sense of this being a place of wilderness and yet through the lens of her camera the artist also shows hints of the habitation of people- most of hidden out of sight, present only via their structures of shelter that sit within the omnipresent environment. 

Morrissey’s photography allows us to explore this far away place, this land on the opposite side of the world, and yet because of the way these are portrayed we feel an intimacy with what we are looking at, the small hints of human populations such as houses or livestock in a field remind us that this is home for those who reside in the remote interior of this unique place. To alter our perception and accentuate the detail of the surfaces in each photographic window, Morrissey takes away the marker of colour and shows the various locations in black and white. Through this technique the dramatic contrasts of the snow filled valleys, or the lip of waves, or even simply the outline of a fish on sand, are more defined and indeed sculptural. 

The artist adds to the artwork that is the environment itself. As our eyes move across these gradients of black, to grey, to white, shapes or blocks of one tone appear and we are led to focus on the composition of the entire image as much as we are intrigued by the stories being told silently through these images. 

Jacob Hoerner

 August 2016

FEATURED  WORKS

‍Leila Morrissey, Shipwrecked Boat- Olafsjördur beach, 2014, Phtography, 60 x 60 cm
Leila Morrissey, Fields of Cotton- Siglofjördur, 2014, Photography, 100 x 100 cm
Leila Morrissey, Angry sheep- Kleifur, 2014,Photography, 100 x 100 cm
‍Leila Morrissey, Abandoned farmhouse-Stykkishôlmur, 2014, Photography, 50 x 50 cm
Leila Morrissey, The Town of Olafsfjördur, 2014, Photography, 100 x 100 cm

OTHER  EXHIBITIONS