8th April – 13th May 2017
Anna Schwartz Gallery
For her tenth solo exhibition at the gallery, Emily Floyd has created a field of sculptures, entitled ‘Icelandic Puffins’. Deploying great sculptural skill, Floyd has used a traditional hand-carving technique inherited from her toy-maker family to create each piece.
The individual puffins are adjoined with Icelandic text identifying members of the financial elite in Iceland. Infamously, the country’s economy collapsed in 2008 when its three major banks (Glitnir, Landsbanki and Kaupthing) defaulted on their international debt, sending shockwaves across the globe. It is said that Olafur Hauksson, the policeman who later prosecuted the bankers, mapped the investigation on a white board in his office. Floyd’s piece playfully speculates on this radical diagram by mirroring it in the installation layout.
Floyd thus combines her interest in the seductive power of design with her engagement with questioning established models, here economic governance and institutional critique. Under the veneer of the charming allure of these puffins lies the dark reality of international financial and political crisis.