Röðull Reyr Kárason: Museum of Ennui at ShoeBoxProjects

from series Sloj, by Röðull Reyr Kárason 2018

32        Röðull Reyr Kárason instagram: @rollipu


All the photos are taken in area of my hometown, Húsavík and most of them are shot on my daily trip to my former workplace at the Húsavík Airport. The photos are really a snapshot, taken by mobile phone and then transported through instagram where I alter them with the “effect” available in Instagram and I publish them on Instagram. Some might say that the I break all the rules “in the book”.  The whole process takes few minutes.  I guess there is no surprise that nature, light and weather conditions are something that influence these photos considering that I live in Iceland where everyday ever changing weather conditions change the mood of  the light, therefore the nature. These photos are moments, shot in the moment when I glimpse something. Something that is changing.  (There is no exact word in Icelandic that represent the word “ennui” – and the word “sloj” means more and less – feeling sick / not feeling ok – but are also used when someone doesn’t want to admit how sick he is or he is not feeling ok, like suffering from hangover after hard drinking nights. Also someone would say he or she is not up for it.) 

Series of six prints from Sloj by Röðull Reyr Kárason in Museum of Ennui 2018

Born 1978 and raised in Húsavík, small village in northeast Iceland. Lived in Reykjavík, Iceland for ten years and last eight years in my hometown, father of two boys and married. Work as Local Service Representative in the municipality of Norðurþing, Húsavík.  Iceland Academy of Arts- BA Fine Art 2001 – 2004  Iceland Academy of Arts- BA  Architecture 2007 – 2010

Ryan Hill: Museum of Ennui at ShoeBoxProjects


31               Ryan Hill

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Ryan Hill received a B.A. from UC Santa Cruz, an M.A. in film history and theory from UCLA, and an M.F.A in studio art from California Institute of the Arts. His early projects were interdisciplinary, site-specific installations and collaborative performances in nonprofit, academic, and museum venues. His recent works on paper and drawing installations are represented by Civilian Art Projects in Washington, DC. His video projections have been shown abroad as part of art and music events.

Essay on Ryan’s work by Pablo Helguera can be found on the Civilian Art Projects website: civilianartprojects.com/exhibitions/mustgo/essay.html

“Empty Privilege” (Image description: display window couple, display window woman, and tiny vanity mirror)

“I had a hunger for things I knew realistically I didn’t actually care for.”

– Tama Janowitz

“But real adults – people who are masters of their own lives – are in fact nowhere to be found. And the youthful transformation of what exists is in no way characteristic of those who are now young: it is present solely in the economic system, in the dynamism of capitalism. It is things that rule and that are young, vying with each other and constantly replacing each other.” 

– Guy Debord, Society of the Spectacle

“All it comes down to is this: I feel like shit, but look great.”

– Brett Easton Ellis

Gary Edward Jones: Museum of Ennui at ShoeBoxProjects

30                 Gary Edward Jones

Presently writing a novel about a woman in the midst of a love affair with the ghost of her dead husband throughout the near-40-year fascist dictatorship of Francisco Franco, Gary Jones is a screenwriter currently living in Los Angeles.

At first, I considered “ennui” as a state that one acquires as a result of one stepping into it by accident. Or that ennui came on a person like an unexpected medical condition. Or that ennui rose up like a wave to overtake a body that was completely unaware. Then I stumbled upon a description of ennui as being an attitude that is “taken on” by an individual. To me, the word “ennui” now had power.

Now, when I hear that a person is “suffering from a state of ennui,” I immediately begin to look up the individual as an active and willing participant. Even though one might consider themselves as weary and retiring from the current state of affairs, that position, in and of itself, is active and participatory, and therefore as powerful as a gun.


Katrina Alexy: Museum of Ennui at ShoeBoxProjects

29   Katrina Alexy 

Katrina Alexy was born and raised in LA. She has created many public art pieces that are all quite different from each other, but all celebrate the natural world and hope to foster joy in some way.

About this piece: Right now I am struggling with the concept of labeling. I understand it is in our human nature to attempt at understanding what we are seeing, feeling, experiencing, etc., but right now in my life, I am wanting to abandon labels and revel in the unknown.


Sara Jane Boyers: Museum of Ennui at ShoeBoxProjects

28  Sara Jane Boyers

There are so many directions to go with ennui – ironically interesting as a topic if not as a description.  A writer as well as a photographer, I enjoyed so much exploring the literary word itself with only a couple of still images that, while depicting ennui, at the same time examine the complexity of “simple.”

After successful careers in music and publishing, Boyers turned to a serious focus on her fine art photography. With a painterly perspective, she isolates significant detail from her subjects, searching for presence and meaning. Her work is in public & private collections and exhibited worldwide. She is presently completing two long-term projects  – FINDING CHINATOWN: AN AMERICAN STORY and DETROIT:DEFINITION, exploring the city of her birth (a photo from which was included in the Venice Biennale2016). In addition to her  photography, Boyers has recently returned to the world of children’s books – her first book, LIFE DOESN’T FRIGHTEN ME, was just released in an updated 25th Anniversary Edition – to explore her visual and literary experience with a series of illustrated book projects, now incorporating her photography.


Rose Portillo: Museum of Ennui exhibition Los Angeles 2018

26  Rose Portillo

Actor/Writer/Director/Educator… Visual Artist: Dia de Los Muertos Altar-maker; Mosaic creator; occasional Other stuff…

About his piece: 11 is an important number. To me. Not just to me. Double numbers of the same number have significance. Especially 11. Not just to me. To me. I look for signs. It’s how I survive. She presented me with a handful of crumpled papers And told me to draw. There it was.

Birds are my companions. They bring signs of significance. Especially Courage, Marvel, Magic, and Chance. Those are their names. And their contributions. (Including feathers) (11).

Cynthia Minet: Museum of Ennui exhibition Los Angeles 2018

No 45 Cynthia Minet

Title: Adventures in the Uncanny Valley, 2016. Post-consumer plastics, LEDs. 18 x 14 x 4 inches. 

This piece reflects my love/hate relationship with technology. Ennui is like a dripping faucet, nagging at one to be fixed. How lost will we get in the uncanny valley?

Cynthia Minet was raised in Rome, Italy, and is based in Los Angeles, CA. Minet works with post-consumer plastics, light, and sound, to construct illuminated sculptures and site-specific installations that are both beautiful and sinister. Her mixed media drawings are rendered in a loose and gestural style. All of Minet’s works carry strong environmental, political and social content.

Solo installations include the USC Fisher Museum, the Culver Center for the Arts/ UCR ARTSblock, and a temporary public work at LA International Airport. Shown in group shows nationally and internationally, Minet has upcoming solo exhibitions at the International Museum of Art and Science in McAllen,Texas, and at the Craft and Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles, CA.


Anna Amethyst in the Museum of Ennui exhibition Los Angeles 2018

No 37  Anna Amethyst

German born Photographer, graduated from the University of Fine Arts HfbK, Hamburg. 

Exhibited in Germany, England, Poland, France and Iceland. Lived and worked in New York, Krakow, London and Husavik. Now based in Hamburg, Germany.

She is interested in the place between; the empty space. When something shifts. When there is magic in the everyday. When a thing becomes something else. When it sparkles on the edge. When the banal becomes absurd.


An installation shot inside Museum of Ennui at ShoeBox Projects

Opened March 17, 2018 the Museum of Ennui was ready for its first visitor.

Works by a variety of artists from many countries are on display in the one person at a time museum. Artists include:

Anna Amethyst, Cynthia Minet, Douglas Hill, Gary Edward Jones, Jessie Rose Vala, Julie Murray, Katrina Alexy, Kim Abeles, Kirthana Devdas, Kristine Schomaker, Maggie Lowe Tennesen, Marina Rees, Martin Cox, Nataliya Petkova, Röðull Reyr Kárason, Rose Portillo, Ryan Hill, Sally O’Reilly, Sara Jane Boyers, Scott MacLeod, and Thora Solveig Bergsteinsdottir.