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Andri Snær Magnason


Andri Snær Magnason was born in Reykjavík on July 14, 1973. His family has lived in the Reykjavík suburb Árbær, where ge grew up, through four generations but his family roots are also in the North of Iceland. Andri studied Icelandic literature at the University of Iceland and finished his B.A. degree in 1997. His final paper on the poet Ísak Harðarson was published by the University in 1999. Andri Snær worked for the Árni Magnússon Institute, researching its collection of taped Icelandic folk poetry. This project received an award from the President of Iceland and the poetry was later published as the CD Raddir (Voices) by the publishing house Bad Taste, in cooperation with the Árni Magnússon Institute. The CD contains Icelandic folk poetry collected throughout Iceland from 1903 – 1973, performed by various Icelanders.

In the year 2000, Andri initiated and edited the first book published in Iceland that year. It is called Bók í mannhafið (A Book for the People) and is a poetry collection containing poetry by young Icelandic poets. The book was not for sale, instead it is public property, meant to travel among people without any single person owning it. Andri Snær has published poetry collections, short story collections, novela and the children's book Sagan af bláa hnettinum (The Story of the Blue Planet). It was the first children's book to receive the Icelandic Literature Award, and has now been translated to number of languages, as well as being adapted for the stage. It was staged at the National Theatre of Iceland in 2001 and the Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People in Toronto yearly year 2005. He has also written the play Náttúruóperan (Opera of Nature), staged in Iceland in 1999, Úlfhamssaga (Úlfham's Saga) that was staged by the Hafnarfjörður Theatre in 2004, and the play Eilíf hamingja (Eternal Happiness) in 2007 Andri's first novel, LoveStar, received the DV newspaper Culture Award for Literature in 2003. His non fiction book Draumalandið: Sjálfshjálparbók handa hræddri þjóð (The Dreamland: A Self Help Book for a Scared Nation) from 2006, where he tackles the issue of aluminium plants and heavy industry in Iceland, received great attention and popularity. It won The Icelandic Literature Prize for non fiction in 2006. In 2019, Andri published the book Um tímann og vatnið (On Time and Water) where he deals with climate issues, among them the melting of glaciers. The same book was nominated for the Nordic Council Literature Prize. 

Author photo: Christopher Lund.

Andri Snær Magnason's website.