Íslenskar Ömmur / Icelandic Grandmothers
By Svava Jónsdóttir and photos by Geir Ólafsson
The Icelandic landscape and older ladies are Gunnella's subjects. Her paintings feature bright colors and busy women along with lively chickens making their way into her art.
"I call the ladies, my old ladies," says Gunnella, and adds, "The big ladies resemble one of my two grandmothers. The ladies are very lively, full of energy, and I use some pictures from my childhood memories."
The ladies are upbeat and happy; they jump rope and skip.
"My pictures feature the traditions of Iceland, based on an Icelandic foundation and my roots."
"The ladies often wear the traditional formal dress and the children wear Icelandic sweaters."
The Icelandic ladies and chickens traveled abroad. A children's book with Gunnella's paintings won an award in the US, a New York Times Best Illustrated Book. Icelandic chickens played a lead role in that book. This fall a new book will be published written by the same author and will be called, How the Ladies Stopped the Wind / Hvernig konurnar stöðvuðu blásturinn. The book will be published in both Iceland and the US this fall.