The visual heritage of the print artist Sigmundur Guðmundsson

Exhibition in the National Library

Sigmundur Guðmundsson print artist was born October 18, 1853 in Ólafsdalur in Dalasýsla county. Sigmundur was a major contributor to the reforms that were made in the print industry in Iceland before the turn of the 20th century.

In 1871, Sigmund began printing studies at Einar Þórðarson's printer at Landsprentsmiðjan printing house in Reykjavík. In the fall of 1876, Sigmundur was sent to Copenhagen to buy equipment and fonts for the newly created Ísafoldarprentsmiðja printing house, where he then worked as head printer for almost a decade. Later, Sigmund won for Félagsprentsmiðjan printing house, along with his work as an agent of emigration. In the spring of 1883, Sigmundur provided a printing press in Scotland and fonts for Sigmundur Gudmundsson's printing house, which he ran with his family over the next few years. His choice of fonts and ornaments was noted, and he had a letterpress in great emphasis. Sigfús Eymundsson book publisher bought Sigmundur's printing house when he went to America for about a year, working as an agent of emigration. After returning home, Sigmundur went partly back to the service of the Ísafoldarprentsmiðja printing house. In 1896, Sigmundur was still in the business of supplying a new press for Ísafoldarprentsmiðja with kerosene engine instead of manual power, the first machine of that type that came to Iceland. It is believed that his work on the kerosene engine affected his health badly, but Sigmundur died from lung corrosion in 1898. An exhibition about Sigmundur's print art, curated by visual artist Unnar Örn and Guðmundur Oddur Magnússon (Goddur) research professor at the Iceland Academy of the Arts has now been opened in the National and University Library. The project was sponsored by Rannís.


Previous exhibitions