Margrét Bjarnadóttir nominated the Icelandic visual artist Haraldur Jónsson
Thinking back to when I first met Haraldur seventeen years ago – when I was seventeen – I remember him being very curious and a little bit as if he was chronically laughing inside. I´d never met anyone who asked such unexpected, unusual questions. From that day on, I slowly got to know his work. First, his prose writing which turns things inside out, shows what´s in-between, what´s behind and what´s five layers above or below, often all at once, then his Emograms and his Emotional Wallpaper, his sound installations (for example, the sound of a crying baby somewhere between the rocks on the coast, or, a seven year old boy reciting a list of emotional states in alphabetical order), his book of photographs –TSYOL – which is like a photo album of the subconscious, his playful performances, drawings, sculptures and so on.
Whatever form Haraldur´s work takes – and it takes many – I always feel like it is very much like my first impression of him. It´s mischievous and full of mystery. His pieces observe and examine the world with hypersensitivity and curiosity. They usually leave me with a brand new perspective and laughing inside. But for some reason I would never want to explain to anyone why I´m laughing. I think because it´s the subconscious laughing.
Recently, Haraldur started an Instagram account composed entirely of videos. They´re a wonderful reminder of how endlessly hilarious and fragile life is. I´m not going to try and describe them, just encourage you to look them up: haraldur8525.
He´s a master of hidden comedy, of miraculous detail … some kind of Prince of Everyday Magic.