‘My Anchor Point Is Here’: How Icelandic Artist Sigurður Guðjónsson’s Venice Pavilion Is—and Isn’t—Inspired by Homeland

Sigurður Guðjónsson, Installation view: Perpetual Motion, Icelandic Pavilion, 59th International Art Exhibition -– La Biennale di Venezia, 2022, Courtesy of the artist and BERG Contemporary, Photos: Ugo Carmeni.

Sigurður Guðjónsson likes to keep people guessing. Take the award-winning artist’s latest offering, Perpetual Motion. At first glance, the nearly 20-foot-tall multisensory sculpture at the Icelandic pavilion at the Venice Biennale presents itself as an enigmatic, immersive, abstract audio-visual piece that transports viewers from one reality to another.

But as one watches the seemingly never-ending moving image installation, on display on perpendicular screens, one can’t help but ask: What is this exactly? And where are we headed?

“This piece will take people to thousands of directions,” Guðjónsson told Artnet News. “It’s similar to music. When you listen to music, it takes you somewhere. It is a sensory experience. It’s abstract and offers layers of readings.”

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