Art and Intercultural Dialogue in Iceland

Applied ICDThe Reykjavik City Library in Iceland has started an  initiative called ‘Beyond Words’ using art to foster intercultural dialogue. This was developed by Martyna Karolina Daniel, project organiser and the library’s specialist in intercultural affairs.

Martyna and her colleagues are committed to making the city’s libraries a safe haven for all Icelanders, whether native or immigrant and a place where cross-cultural dialogue can take place.

The library is offering a variety of art workshops, making available a wide range of foreign-language books, and using more symbols in their signage in response to linguistic differences. They also offer storytelling in multiple languages, inviting community members to read books in any language they know, and invite extended families to participate. And they co-sponsored a Story Circle Map of Iceland, painted 2013 by 35 women who have participated in Women’s Story Circle, coming from 18 countries to live in Iceland. To make the panting they used the method of the indigenous people of Australia, which entails that many work together to create artworks.

For further information, see: 

Askham, Poppy. (2020, July 21). Beyond words: Reykjavík’s city libraries use art to foster interculturalism. The Reykjavik Grapevine.

Author: Center for Intercultural Dialogue

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, the Director of the Center for Intercultural Dialogue, manages this website.

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