Northern Exchange: Cold War Histories and Nuclear Futures

  • Permar, Roxane (PI)
  • Timmins, Susan (CoI)
  • Jónsdóttir, Ásthildur (CoI)
  • Härküonen, Elina (CoI)

Project Details


This collaborative project examined the Cold War in Iceland, using methods drawn from contemporary art practices to re-imagine the period and find out how the presence of NATO radar stations and American military bases impact on the population both past and present. The team comprised researchers and students from three universities – University of the Highlands and Islands, Iceland Academy of Arts and the University of Lapland. We worked with local participant collaborators and volunteers from communities located near the radar installations that formed part of NATO’s extensive early warning defence system across North America and Europe: Höfn, Keflavík, Bolungarvik and Þórshöfn. Different generations of people shared memories and perceptions linked to this period, contributing to expanded understanding of our nuclear future from the Icelandic perspective and encouraging a different understanding of the remote North. These were also shared publicly at Höfði House, Reykjavik, site of the Gorbachev/Reagan summit in 1986.
Effective start/end date1/04/1631/05/17

Collaborative partners


  • Northern Exchange, Iceland, Cold War, Relate North


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