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Justice for Krýsuvíkurkirkja

September 15, 2011

© jmillerphoto - Krýsuvíkurkirkja

I mentioned this on my blog now devoted to the business end of my photography, but one of my favorite churches in Iceland burned to the ground this past New Year’s Eve.

Krýsuvíkurkirja was a small wooden church a moderately short distance from both Reykjavík and Keflavík.  It was unique both in coloration and construction–most of the churches on the southwest coast were either stone (like Innri-Njarðvíkurkirkja or Hvalesneskirkja) or corrugated iron covered.  This one was natural wood with just a light natural stain that acted as a sealant to keep the weather out.  It had been rehabilitated after years and years of neglect and disuse and was under the protection of the National Museum.

News came yesterday in Iceland Review that four young adults (ages 18-21) have been charged with the arson that stole this treasure from the Icelandic people.  Additional details that I had not heard before came out in the article.  Namely that there was a petty theft involved and that it had been soaked with gasoline before it was set afire.  Very sad, but maybe there will be justice for this fine old church that left us far too soon.

About the image:

This image was made during the middle of a heat wave in Iceland.  It got up to the high 70’s on this particular day and we were given the opportunity to go and enjoy part of an afternoon for safety reasons–where I worked didn’t have air conditioning and it was blazing hot inside.  So I took advantage of my afternoon the way I always did if I had free time and no obligations… out making images.  It was shot at about 5pm in August and I love this image because of the cloud formation and the remnants of Iceland’s volcanic past (and present) in the background with the ancient dormant crater filling the right side of the frame.  Shot with my Elan 7e, 24mm lens, and probably Fuji 100 print (negative) film, scanned in with a Nikon film scanner.

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