Vala Kjarval

Vala Kjarval (b. 1991) is a dual citizen of both the United States and Iceland. Raised on a farm in upstate New York, she now lives and works in New York City and constantly smells of C41. She received her BA in Film & Photography in 2013, with concentrations in cinematography and social realistic film theory. The on-going series “Að Vera Til” first started alongside her thesis 16mm film of the same title has been featured online and exhibited in Atelier de Koekkoek’s The Ones We Love Exhibition (Vienna, Fall 2014) and in Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center (NY, Fall 2013). Today we take a look at Vala’s series Að Vera Til.

roll 4 iceland.vala kjarval 004

Vala Kjarval December 9 2012 Tyler  006

roll 1 iceland.vala kjarval 004

Að Vera Til (2012)

“Photographing my family is a way of exploring my own identity as an Icelandic American. There is a sense of alienation of being a dual citizen, leaving one never completely whole in either place. Images part of the series includes the family farm in Upstate, NY and visiting my father’s hometown of Reykjavík. The series was originally initiated to analyze the potency of the American Dream and a harsh criticism of the climate of opportunities available in American Farming today. It has expanded to my parent’s complicated role as immigrants and further developed into a study of how complicated life is in general and the pain and beauty that comes with it. Ultimately I work towards representing stories of all my subjects through a sympathetic yet objective lens with hope that viewers relate on a basic human level.”

iceland vala kjarval porta 120 010

Vala_Kjarval_05

Vala_Kjarval_06

Vala_Kjarval_07

Vala_Kjarval_08

Vala_Kjarval_09

Vala_Kjarval_10

Vala_Kjarval_11

Vala_Kjarval_12

Vala_Kjarval_13

Vala_Kjarval_14

Vala_Kjarval_15

Vala_Kjarval_16

To view more of Vala’s work please visit her website.



Issue No.13 – Call For Entry!


Robert Lyons
International Limited Residency MFA Photography Program Hartford Art School
University of Hartford
Portland, Oregon


Aint–Bad No. 13 Call For Entry is officially open! We are teaming up with a new group of guest curators and editors from all over to collaborate on a publication that seeks the best contemporary photography being made today! Learn more about each of these talented curators and submit today!

Robert Lyons lives in Portland,Oregon. He has taught extensively in the USA and Europe at various institutions including: Emily Carr College of Art & Design, Photographic Center Northwest, International Center of Photography, and the Ostkreuzschule in Berlin. He received an M.F.A. from Yale University in 1979. Lyons has received numerous awards for his work including: NEA Survey Grant, Ford Foundation Grants, and a MacDowell Residency. His work has been widely exhibited in the United States and Europe and is represented in numerous permanent collections including: The Metropolitan Museum, Seattle Art Museum, the Henry Art Gallery, Portland Art Museum, Hallmark Collection of Photography, Nelson–Atkins Museum, and Beth Hatefutsoth Museum of the Diaspora, Tel Aviv, Israel.

See More!