Hnitbjörg 100 years old 
We know the works of Einar Jónsson (1874-1954), they are a part of Reykjavík’s cityscape and
our history. The statues of Ingólfur Arnarson on Arnarhóll and Jón Forseti in Austurvöllur are the
works of Einar Jónsson, one of the nation’s greatest artists. He was born on the Galtafell farm in
Hrunamannahreppur in 1874, studied and worked in sculpture in Copenhagen and Rome from
1886 to 1920, when he returned home. He built himself a studio and a museum at the top of
Skólavörðuholt, with the help of the state and some good people. The museum opened a
hundred years ago, Iceland’s first art museum. Back then, the hill where Hallgrímskirkja and
Einar Jónsson's museum stand, was not only the highest point in the city, Reykjavík’s waste site
was also there. He named his unique house Hnitbjörg, now a museum. The centenary was, of
course, well celebrated today.

Hnitbjörg under construction over one hundred years ago

Einar Jónsson’s art museum

The view from the museum

The stairs leading up to the appartment from the museum

The artist’s conference room

Einar Jónsson’s art museum

A lot of people showed up for the centenary— no wonder, as it was a great party!

Photographs & text: Páll Stefánsson
Reykjavík 24/06/2023 : A7C, A7RV – FE 1.8/14mm GM, FE 1.2/50mm GM