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Sölvi Helgason

Biography

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Daníel Geir og Jólabandið - Jólastress

 

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Sölvi Helgason MANNAKORN 1977

 

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Sölvi Helgason

 

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Sölvi Helgason

 

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Sölvi Helgason

Sölvi Helgason was an artist, philosopher and drifter in Iceland in the 19th century. If he hadn't been arrested, we might not know anything more about Sölvi than folk tales about his life. He never went to school, but was known to always be painting and writing. It is posited from his writings that he was mentally ill and suffered from paranoia; he was known to accuse people of stealing his work. He often referred to himself by made-up names as well as names of playwrights, artists, musicians and philosophers: Sókrates, Plato, Sólon, Melanchthon, Sölvi Spekingur, Sjúlvi, Húsfriður, Sjúlvi Hinn Vitri, Húmboldt, Spinoza, Göte, Hegel, Schiller, Schott, Newton, Caesar, Leonardo da Vinci, Vasco da Gama, Kant, Lamertine, Skagfjörð Norðlandíus, Beethoven and Shakespeare. Sölvi was convicted several times for vagrancy, falsifying his traveling papers or passport and for petty theft. He was often flogged and spent three years in prison in Denmark. Today approximately 100 of Sölvi's artworks and manuscripts are in the collection of the National and University Library of Iceland and the National Museum of Iceland.
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