CV / Bio

Pétur Thomsen is an Icelandic photographic artist, born in Reykjavik in 1973.
He lives and works in south of Iceland. In 2004 he received his master’s degree in fine arts from the École Nationale Supérieur de la Photographie in Arles France.

Pétur Thomsen focuses on the disruption of nature, both in his photographs of the Kárahnjúkar power plant project area in his series Imported Landscape, and in his works Umhverfing (an Icelandic word for the state between nature and environment) and Ásfjall (Mt. Ásfjall). These works have been exhibited in venues such as the National Gallery of Iceland, the Reykjavík Museum of Photography, and the National Museum of Iceland. And in numerous solo and group exhibitions around the world. Such as Photoforum PasqArt Switzerland, Les Rencontre d’Arles France, Musée de l’Elysée Switzerland, Musée national d’Histoire et Art Luxembourg, Fotografie Forum Frankfurt Germany, Photo Gallery International Tokyo Japan.

In his latest series Landnám (Settlement) Pétur Thomsen is observing or rather operating as an investigator out in the field during the winter nights, investigating three aspects of land use in the south of Iceland:  mines, tree plantation and farmers use of land. Using photographic flash equipment to partially light up the dark northern night of the Icelandic winter.

Pétur has been nominated and received numerous awards and prizes. In 2004 he won The 10th LVMH young artists’ award. In 2005 he was selected by the Musée de L’Élysée in Lausanne for reGeneration 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. The exhibition Imported landscape in the National Gallery of Iceland was selected as the exhibition of the year 2010 in Iceland.

Pétur Thomsen is a founding member and former Chairman of FíSL, The Icelandic Contemporary Photography Association, www.fisl.is

Pétur Thomsen is one of the founders and co-director of The Icelandic Photography Festival. www.tipf.is

Pétur gives lectures and teaches workshops both in Iceland and abroad.

He lives in the south of Iceland, in an eco-village called Sólheimar.

Education

2001 – 2004        MFA, École Nationale Supérieur de la Photographie (ENSP), Arles, France.
1999 – 2001        BTS photographie at the Ecole Supérieure des Métiers Artistiques, Montpellier, France.
1998 – 1999       Art history and archaeology at the Université Paul Valéry Montpellier III, France.

Selected solo Exhibitions

2018               Duclair, The town of Duclair, France
2016               Landskrona Foto Festival, Sweden
2016               Listasafn Árnesinga, Iceland
2015               Culturescapes, Basel, Switzerland.
2015               Culturescapes, Bern, Switzerland.
2015               Warsaw Festival of Art Photography, Poland.
2014               Í Upphæðum II,Listamenn Gallerí, Reykjavík, Iceland
2013               Imported Landscape, Festival Les Boreales, Caen, France.
2013               Í Upphæðum, Gallerí Gangur, Reykjavík, Iceland
2012               Imported Landscape, Les Rencontres d’Arles, France.
2011               Ásfjall, The National Gallery of Photography, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2010               The National Gallery of Iceland. Reykjavík, Iceland.
2010               Transfotografia, Gdansk, Poland.
2010               Reykjavík Museum of photography, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2010               Transphotographique, Lille, France.
2007               Gallery Turpentine. Reykjavík, Iceland.
2007               Camara Oscura, Madrid, Spain.
2006               PhotoforumPasquArt, Biel-Bienne, Switzerland.
2005               The National Gallery of Photography, National Museum of Iceland.
2005               Gallery Mustafa Ali, Damascus, Syria.
2005               NCCA-SpB, Kronstadt, Russia.
2004               Akureyri Art Museum.  Akureyri, Iceland.
2003               The cultural center of Skriðuklaustur, Islande.
2003               Galerie du LAKANAL, Montpellier, France.

Selected group exhibitions

2019               In Transition, Hafnarborg, Hafnarfjörður, Iceland
2019               AMY'S DONATION, National Gallery of Iceland
2019               NATURE - home and workplace, Ljungbergmuseet, Sweden
2018               BLOSSOMING / Lífsblómið, National Gallery of Iceland
2018               No Man‘s Land – Where Beauty Alone Reigns? Reykjavík Art Museum, Iceland
2018               35/30, Hafnarborg Center of Culture and Fine Art, Hafnarfjörður Iceland
2018               Nature as Playground, The Museum of Photography, Seoul, South Korea
2018               Archeology for the Anthropocen, The Factory, Hjalteyri, Iceland
2018               This island Earth, Northen Photographic Center, Oulu, Finland
2018               Changes/Breytingar, The Permanent Mission of Iceland, Geneva, Switzerland
2018               NATURE - home and workplace, Johannes Larsen Museum, Denmark
2018               This island Earth, Reykjavík Photo Museum, Iceland
2017 - 2019 Treasures of a Nation, National Gallery of Iceland, Reykjavík Iceland
2017               This island Earth, Galleri Image, Aarhus, Denmark
2017               Hverfing/Shapeshifting, Verksmiðjan Hjalteyri, Iceland
2016               Borrowed Time – Icelandic Artists Looking Forward. Scandinavia House, New York, USA
2016               Art for action, United Nations, New York, USA.
2016              Neige, Les Lilas, Frakkland.
2015 - 2020 Points of View, National Culture House, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2015               Coping with Distance, PhotoforumPasquArt, Biel/Bienne, Sviss.
2015               Rökkur – Nuit des Images, Musée de l‘Elysée, Sviss.
2015               ÍSÓ 2015, sumarsýning FÍSL, Ísafjörður.
2015               Enginn staður, Hafnarborg, Hafnarfjörður.
2015               Steps forward:facing the Arctic climate. Gallery Fyra Fem, House of Sweden, Washington, DC, USA.
2015               Warsaw Festival of Art Photography, Poland
2015               Eitt leiðir af öðru, Gallerí Gamma, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2015               Ákall, Listasafn Árnesinga, Hveragerði, Iceland.
2014               Ummerki sköpunar, Hafnarborg, Hafnarfjörður, Iceland.
2014               Viewfinder, Pingyao International Photography Festival, Pingyao, China.
2014               Viewfinder, Riga Photomonth, Riga, Latvia.
2014               Contemporary Nordic Photography, Scandinavian House, New York, USA.
2013               distURBAN, Musée National d’Histoire et Art, Luxembourg.
2013               Icelandic Photography, Hippolyte Gallery, Helsinki Finland.
2013               Nuit de la Photo, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Sviss.
2012               Tulca Festival of Visual Arts, Galway, Ireland.
2012               Regards sur Arles, Galerie espace pour l’art, Arles, France.
2012               Voies Off, Arles, France.
2011               Backlight Photo Festival, Tampere, Finland.
2011               Frontiers of Another Nature, Fotografie Forum Frankfurt. Germany.
2011               awakening, Akureyri Art Museum, Iceland.
2010               Renversements de faits / Abstractions photographiques, Le Château d’Eau, Toulouse, France.
2010               Nordens U-land? - Isländsk konst i kristid. Fargfabriken  Norr, Östersund, Sweden.
2010               The Sovereign European Art Prize, Barbican Centre, London, UK.
2010               On painting, pictorial canon and contemporary image, EMAT Valencia, Spain.
2009               EARTH, Museum of Photography Thessaloniki, Grikkland.
2009              Fototriennale.dk,Filosofgangen, Brandts Museet for Fotokunst, Odense, Denmark.
2009              ReGeneration, Preus Museum, Norway.
2009               You are more beautiful than a butterfly, Gallery Turpentine, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2009               Flash at a Moment of Danger, Listasafn Árnesinga, Hveragerði, Iceland.
2009               Minjar, Natural History Museum of Kópavogur, Kópavogur, Iceland.
2009              ReGeneration, Albin O Kuhn Library and Gallery, College Park, Maryland, USA.
2009              ReGeneration, Hoffman Gallery Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Oregon, USA.
2009              ipseity – abeyance, Nordic House, Reykjavík, Iceland. 
2009               Dreams of the Sublime, Kuntsi museum of Modern Art, Vaasa Finland
2008               Dreams of the Sublime and Nowhere. Reykjavík Art Museum, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2008               Endurkast / Reflection, The National Gallery of Photography, Reykjavík.
2008               Dreams of the Sublime and Nowhere. Centre for fine arts, Brussels, Belgium.
2007               Photo Gallery International, Tokyo, Japan.
2007               Climax, Festival Voies Off, Arles, France
2007               Centre Culturel Marcel Pagnol, FOS/mer,France.
2007               Sæból. The Nordic house. Reykjavík, Islande.
2007               « L’esprit dans l¹escalier ». DRAC, Aix en Provence, France.
2007               Arrebato. Camara Oscura galeria de arte. Madrid, Spain.
2007               ReGeneration, 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. Art Center, Pasadena, California, USA.
2006               ReGeneration, 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. Art institutuin of Boston, Massachusets, USA.
2006               ReGeneration, 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. Pingyao Festival, Pingyao, China.
2006               ReGeneration, 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. Aperture Foundation, New York, USA.
2006               “PIE” exhibition, Tokyo, Japan.
2006               Hvörf, video installation. City hall, Reykjavík, Iceland.
2005               ReGeneration, 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milano, Italia.
2005               ReGeneration, 50 Photographers of Tomorrow. Musée de l’Elysée, Switzerland.
2005               Instituto francés de Valencia, Valencia, Spain.
2005               Galería El Ojo Ajeno, Peru.
2004               The 10th LVMH young artists’ award winner. Galerie du Pont-Neuf. Paris, France.
2004               Bagration & Harmenszonn and Voies Off - The Fringe Festival - Arles, festival off des Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie d’Arles. France.
2004               Villa Medicis, Académie de France à Rome. Rome, Italy.
2004               Espace Van Gogh, Arles, France.
2003               Voies Off - The Fringe Festival - Arles, festival off des Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie d’Arles. France.
2003               TEC-TECE. Rencontre Internationale de la Photographie d’Arles. France.
2002               L’architecture de l’abbaye Montmajour et de son environnement. L’abbaye de Montmajour, France.
2002               TEC-TECE. Rencontre International de la Photographie d’Arles, France.
2002               4 points de vues photographiques.  La Galerie Photo. Montpellier, France.

Prizes and Grants

2018              Three months work stipendium, The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2016               Nine months work stipendium, The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2014               Six months work stipendium, The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2013               Icelandic Art Fund
2012               Travel grant, Muggur.
2012               Nominated for the Prix Pictet
2011               Imported Landscape in the National Gallery of Iceland.
Exhibition of the year 2010 in Iceland.
2011               Nominated for the HBC Award 2011. France
2011               Nominated for the Hasselblad Award 2011
2011               Icelandic Art Center. Project grant.
2011               Nature preservation fund, Iceland. Project grant.
2010               Nomination for the Deutsche Börse photography prize.
2010               Myndstef. Cultural Fund, Iceland
2010               Short listed for Sovereign European Art Prize, London, England.
2010               Six months work stipendium, The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2009              South Iceland cultural found.
2009               Reykjavík cultural fund.
2008               National museum of photography,Iceland. Project grant.
2008               Six months work stipendium, The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2007               Myndstef. Cultural Fund, Iceland.
2007               Penninn, Cultural Fund, Iceland.
2006              Six months work stipendium, The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2005               The Ministry of Culture, Iceland.
2005               Margrét Björgólfsdóttir, memorial foundation. Reykjavík, Iceland.
2004               The 10th LVMH young artists’ award winner, France.

Boards & Committees

2015-               Co-Director, Co-Founder, The Icelandic Photography Festival, Reykjavik, Iceland
2012 - 2015 Co-Founder, Board Member, Photography Days Festival, Reykjavik, Iceland
2018 - 2019 Chairman of the Education Board, The School of Photography, Reykjavik, Iceland
2013 - 2019  Education Board Member, The School of Photography, Reykjavik, Iceland
2007                Founding member of Físl, The Icelandic Contemporary Photographers Association
2007 - 2015 Board member of Físl, The Icelandic Contemporary Photographers Association
2011 - 2015  Chairman of Físl, The Icelandic Contemporary Photographers Association

Curatorial Work

2018                Archeology for the Anthropocene, The Factory, Hjalteyri, Iceland
2016                Vennmyndir, Listamenn Gallery, Reykjavík, Iceland

Lectures & Teaching

2013 - 2017  The School of Photography, Reykjavik, Iceland, Annual Review Committee Member
2012 -            The School of Photography, Reykjavik, Iceland, workshop teacher
2015-2017   The Reykjavik School of Visual Arts, Reykjavik, Iceland, part-time teacher
2013                École supérieure d'arts & médias de Caen/Cherbourg, workshop teacher
2012               Iceland Academy of the Arts, Reykjavik, Iceland, workshop teacher
2011                TAMK, Tampere University of Applied Science, workshop teacher
2004/2006     Iceland Academy of the Arts, Reykjavik, Iceland, guest lecturer

Recidencies

2005               Kronstadt, National Center for Contemporary Art St.Petersburg Branch, Russia.
2003              The cultural centre of Skriðuklaustur, Egilsstaðir, Iceland.

Bibliography (Selection)

2019       130 works from the collection of the National Gallery of Iceland, The National Gallery, Iceland

               AMY‘S Donation, The National Gallery of Iceland

2018       Duclair : un regard islandais, Pétur Thomsen, Edition Octopus, France

Nature as a Playground - Korean and Nordic Contemporary Photogarphy, The Museum of Photography, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hverfing Shape Shifting, Akademía skynjunarinnar, Reykjavík

2017       Esthétique de la photographie de chantier, dir. François Soulages & Angèle Ferrere, L‘Harmattan, France

2014      Landmark: The Fields of photography,Thames & Hudson.

2013      Nordic Now, norræn samútgáfa um norræna ljósmyndun. Umfjöllun.
C+ Fashion Week Paris, París Frakkland.
Photo RAW, Finnland.
Mois Européen de la Photographie, Luxembourg.

                Nuit de la Photo, Sviss.

2012      KATALOG 24.3, Denmark.
               Listgildir Samtímans, Handbók um samtímalist, Jón, B.K Ransu, Iceland.

                „QU‘AVEZ-VOUS FAIT DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE?“ Actes Sud, Arles Frakkland.

                Les Rencontres d‘Arles, Une École Française, Arles Frakkland.

                The New York Timse/Science Times, China.

2011      Ásfjall, Pétur Thomsen, The National Museum of Photography, Iceland.

Blow magazine, Ireland.
L‘Architecture d‘Aujourd‘hui
,  #382, France.

awakening, Sigrún Sigurðardóttir, Akureyri Art Museum, Iceland.

2010      Islande, le barrage de „nulle part“, Æsa Sigurjónsdóttir, in ARTnord 2010, France.

                De Pictura en defensa de la Belleza, Espai Metropolita d‘Art de Torrent, Spain.

                The 2009-10 Sovereign European Art Prize. London, England.

2009     Flash at a Moment of Danger, Listasafn Árnesinga, Iceland.

                Afturgöngur og afskipti af sannleikanum, Sigrún Sigurðardóttir, National museum of Iceland.

2008      InfraMince, No 4. Umhverfing. Arles, France.
Icelandic Art News, The Witness, commissioned cover piece. CIA, Reykjavík, Iceland.

Endurkast / Reflection, The National Gallery of Photography, Reykjavík, Iceland.

Dreams of the Sublime and Nowhere,Bozar, Brussel.

                Draumar um ægifegurð í íslenskri samtímalist, Reykjavík Art Museum.

2007      Tímabundið landslag, Sigrún Sigurðardóttir, Morgunblaðið, 29/09/07.

ARREBATO, Camara Oscura Galeria de Arte, Madrid, Spain.

                WORK, Changing Faces. Leiden Holland.

2006      A strange place called nowhere by Æsa Sigurjónsdóttir in SHIFTS, Archives in dialogue and new identities in documentarism. i(p+r)/n 2nd Changing Faces Conference. Finland.              

Kamera-Lehti, Islantilainen valokuva. Helsinki, Finnland.

PHaT PHOTO, Pretty Hot and Tempting Photo magazine. CMS Corporation, Tokyo, Japan. May-June 2006.

PHaT PHOTO, Pretty Hot and Tempting Photo magazine EXTRA. CMS Corporation, Tokyo, Japan. May 2006.

reGeneration 50 Photographers of Tomorrow 2005-2025. Aperture Foundation, NY, USA.

PORTRAIT de MANUFACTURE Jaeger-LeCoultre. Switzerland, March 2006.

                Kárahnjúkar, Der kleine Bund, 28. January 2006, Switzerland.

2005      “Aðflutt landslag”, National Museum of Iceland, Reykjavík, Iceland.

reGeneration 50 Photographers of Tomorrow 2005-2025. Thames & Hudson, London.

“Einn hinna ungu”, Páll Baldvin Baldvinsson, Dagblaðið Vísir, 18/08/2005.

“Hvernig höndla skal það óráðna”, Bergþóra Jónsdóttir, Morgunblaðið, 22/02/2005. Iceland.

                Les cahiers de l’École de Blois – numéro 3, Les Éditions de l'Imprimeur, Paris, France, Janvier 2005.

2004      “Kárahnjúkar og kímnigáfa í list Péturs Thomsens og Louisu Matthíasdóttur”, Bergþóra Jónsdóttir, Morgunblaðið, 14/09/2004. Iceland.

                "Antichambre/Anticamera", Éditions Actes Sud / École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie, for the exhibition "Antichambre/Anticamera", Académie de France in Rome Italy, Villa Médicis, June 2004.

 Work in Public Collections (selection)

The National Gallery of Iceland. Reykjavík, Iceland / The National Museum of Photography, Iceland

Le Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne, Switzerland / Musée National d‘Histoir et d‘Art, Luxembourg /

Hafnarborg, Hafnarfjörður Art Museum, Iceland / Reykjavík Museum of Photography /

Reykjavík Art Museum / PhotoforumPasquArt, Biel-Bienne Switzerland / La Galerie Photo. Montpellier,

France / L’abbaye de Montmajour, France