Contrary to images like this…
… it isn’t now. This is the golden age:
Ríkarður Jónsson’s Bird Falling Apart in Djúpivogur
There isn’t enough money to keep Iceland of the 1970s, at the height of the herring fishery, in good shape anymore, so such wonderful European gestures languish, in favour of a new kind of colonialism, the eggs of Merry Bay:
You can read my post on them, here: https://afarminiceland.com/2019/11/20/the-eggs-and-petroleum-tanks-of-icelands-merry-bay/
Don’t get me wrong, they are wonderful, playful, joyous and exquisite, but they are also global. That is the price of staying in the game when the herring go away. The sad thing is, this very real and honourable Iceland (for all its aesthetic colonialism, it is, at least, Scandinavian and European)…
…is barely findable in the tourist information of the country, or online, or anywhere, as if Icelanders are either so embarrassed by their past they want to hide it, so used to tourists not caring that they keep it to themselves to protect its honour, or so used to the government putting up this and that that to them it’s just another government project. Meanwhile, they want to be part of the global world, not of distant Reykjavik. What a bind! Now Iceland is trying to train tourists to be respectful.
Inspired by Iceland launches new tourism campaign Iceland Academy (PRNewsFoto/Inspired by Iceland)
Being respectful to art or history is not really the point. That distance from government is very Icelandic, although not always positively so.