Reykjavík City runs several museums as well as nurturing the city's literary heritage which culminates in the city being designated a UNESCO City of Literature

Reykjavik Art Museum

Reykjavik Art Museum / Listasafn Reykjavíkur is the largest art museum in Iceland, housed in three distinct buildings in central Reykjavik: Hafnarhús, Kjarvalsstaðir, and Ásmundarsafn. The museum regularly exhibits works by three of Iceland’s most renowned artists; Erró, Kjarval, and Ásmundur Sveinsson. In addition, the museum holds various exhibitions by Icelandic and international artists. The Museum is also a venue for young and promising talents.

Reykjavík Art Museum’s exhibitions span everything from the historic to our times, and from the traditional to the very peripheries of art. Exhibitions usually run for 3-4 months, with new exhibitions opening in the beginning of the year, in spring and autumn. The art collection owned by the museum is also on display in various official buildings and public spaces all over the city. The Reykjavík Art Museum hosts diverse cultural happenings, staging over a hundred events from lectures and seminars to unusual concerts.

The Reykjavik City Museum

The Reykjavik City Museum includes five museums and exhibitions: The Settlement Exhibition, the Reykjavík Museum of Photography, the Reykjavík Maritime Museum, Árbær Open Air Museum, and last but not least, the monuments and modern art located on Viðey Island. The purpose of the museum is to preserve the city’s cultural heritage, dating from the settlement period to the present day and convey it to visitors in a lively and engaging way.

The Reykjavik Museum of Photography

The Reykjavik Museum of Photography / Ljósmyndasafn Reykjavíkur preserves around five million photographs that have been shot by professional and amateur photographers dating from 1870 to 2002. Around thirty thousand of these photos are available on the museums photo web. The museum also holds an extensive offer of exhibitions focusing on historical and contemporary photography in artistic- social- and cultural context.

The Settlement Exhibition

The Settlement Exhibition  / Landnámssýning is based upon remains found in the centre from the oldest relics of human habitation in Reykjavík. Multimedia technology is used to provide insight into the environment of the Reykjavík farm at the time of the first settlers. Exhibits include artefacts from archaeological excavations in central Reykjavík.

Árbær Open Air Museum

Árbær Open Air Museum / Árbæjarsafn has more than 20 buildings which form a town square, a village and a farm. Most of the buildings have been relocated from central Reykjavík. Árbær Open Air Museum tries to give a sense of the architecture and way of life and lifestyles of the past in Reykjavík and during summer visitors can see domestic animals.

Reykjavík Maritime Museum

Reykjavík Maritime Museum / Sjóminjasafn exhibitions reveal Iceland’s history of fishing and seafaring throughout the ages.