Dieter Roth ‘Reykjavik Slides’ (31,035) Every View of a City @ Hauser & Wirth London

Hauser & Wirth presents Dieter Roth’s monumental project ‘Reykjavik Slides’, featuring 31,035 slides shown simultaneously on multiple projectors. ‘Reykjavik Slides’ was inspired by the distinctive and unique character of Icelandic architecture and documents every building in the capital. Made with the assistance of Pál Magnússon and the artist’s two sons, Björn and Karl, the work is a comprehensive survey, drawing one’s attention to the subject matter of the project, rather than the role of the artist.

With ‘Reykjavik Slides’, Roth used this same didactic approach to create an homage to Iceland. The work’s numerous images present an act of dedication to the singularity of Reykjavik, Roth’s home since 1957 and, in seeing every building as worthy of admiration, Roth allowed life itself to communicate as art.

Bjorn Roth, son of the artist, who worked on a number of his father’s projects including this one was in London for the opening of the exhibition. “When my father came to Iceland he found the architecture and houses of Reykjavik interesting and different from what he had seen before”, he said.

“First he thought they were ugly, compared to what he thought of as beautiful buildings.. but slowly he saw the beauty in the architecture and started to admire it. In the end he wanted to have a collection of it, or include it in his works”.

Roth moved to Iceland in 1957, and lived there until his death in 1998.
|Kostas Prapoglou