Happy Solstice from Olafsfjördur! From the whole town!
See them? Here are some hints:
Above: A Family of Fish Trolls Looking Much like a Fish Egg With a Skull for an Eye (or the Moon)
Above: Fat-Bellied SeatedTroll, Waving
Above: A Skull On A Post
Above: Lovers Embracing
Below: Troll With Runes and Spilled Treasure. Beware!
The technique is exquisite. You let the sun and gravity break off a bit of a glacier, you soak it for a few days in salt water, then cast it up on a beach of black volcanic sand. After a night of the waves splashing sand all over it, it sets in the sun. It’s really fun to chase this art form down,. Here’s a troll with a monk in its belly, holding Christ as a child. And isn’t the Mjalður the Bell Ram off to the left? Why I think it is.
If you haven’t read Gunnar’s Advent, it’s time.
The altar at Hólar is an example of what a tree can be made into, in a form of technology imported to Iceland.
The rowan tree in the graveyard outside is an example of how pre-Christian symbols can use a tree for the same ends of contemplation and memory. The cross is a third example.
Iceland’s history walks between these poles, but always the green tree is honoured most deeply, and at the least expense. It’s good to have one’s symbols take root and look after themselves, because there’s work to do.