Hversdagssafn – Museum of everyday life is located in the center of Ísafjörður in the Westfjords of Iceland. It has the main purpose of investigating the mundane and the common, finding the poetry that comes forward when no one is looking.
The installations echo local voices, memories and story fragments – nostalgic, humorous and thought provoking – curated in various interactive ways. The installations are local, as they give a glimpse into the daily life of the people in the Westfjords. But at the same time, they are universal, touching shared topics of all human beings.
Everyday life is a little bit like dark matter. It is what happens in between significant moments in life and holds everything together. It is meeting friends, having dinner, yelling at children, being yelled at, sulking, laughing and so on. And so on. It is walking from one place to the next. It is going to work. It is staying at home. It is worrying and washing dishes. It is both random and routine.
So we‘re a little bit like NASA but working with words, memories and effect.
All our displays are in both icelandic and english and in addition to that we have museum catalouges in french and german.
We, the women behind the museum, are Björg and Vaida, we met through our mutual love of the mundane and common at a little film festival in Ísafjörður in 2014. Shortly after we met, we decided to join forces and create a space where we could dig into the subject of everyday life. With the help of our community and the regional development fund, we opened the museum in June 2016.
Vaida is a lithuanian – born visual anthropologist who found her way to Ísafjörður through Tromsö where she studied. Björg is born and raised in the small village Suðureyri, trained in applied cultural studies and works at the local high school.
The main reason for the Museum of Everyday life is curiousity. We love the excitement of unveiling a story. We love to get an insight into people’s lives and find the beauty – the unpolished gems in the mundane. We love sharing it because it creates connections between people, both within our local society and outside of it.
We like to create works that our fellow curious wanderers can dive into, shuffle through, listen to and peak into, savouring the effect it brings.
* The project is supported by Uppbyggingarsjóður Vestfjarða.