Inspired by the wild beauty of Iceland, Kristjana’s spectacular homeland, this stunning, contemplative map zooms out to reveal the entire world, exploring the balance between all of humankind and the environment which it inhabits. In this piece, Kristjana has identified the ‘Blue Zones’ of the world, places where life expectancy is highest and serenity, life and habitat are at their most successful.
Slanting light sweeps across the piece with a peppering of detail towards the centre, reflecting the ways that those within the Blue Zones think and behave; calmly, without excess but with great daily purpose. Community, family and nature take precedence in a society where earth’s resources are moderately used, leaving nature as intact as possible.. These are behaviours to which all people can aspire, and the warning signs of what happens when we do not are vividly portrayed in the artwork too. A pair of mournful ostriches represent the last of their species, living now on just one continent, where once they roamed over many continents.
The paler colours of the piece invoke the boundless spectrum of light in Iceland; streaming from glacial ice and snow, bouncing up to meet the endless summer nights and infusing the landscape, shining myriad spotlights across the crisp, clear Northern island. Neon colours drip from above, splitting the light and forcing the viewer to acknowledge the sheer power of nature. They make you sit up and notice all that surrounds you, and when in the face of breathtaking nature on this scale, you cannot help but feel the desperate need to preserve it. Those from the Blue Zones set the example, urging you to start with changes on a small, personal level.
The delicate 3D elements hover over the map of the earth, echoing the fragility of the world. No longer does it feel infinite or indestructible. Yet beacons of change and rebirth are apparent, symbolised by Kristjana’s fantastical and heroic animals. The white elephant’ is commonly misunderstood as being albino, but the Thai term chang samkhan actually translates as 'auspicious elephant'. Kristjana includes it to illustrate that we should focus on a simpler life, putting our families first, taking care of our communities and passing our values and knowledge down through the generations. A way of living that strives for a Utopian life for all.
Originally made for an art exhibition in Reykjavik in 2020,The Neon Skyjadyr white hue World Map gave Kristjana the opportunity to express her values to her home community.