Hallgrímskirkja Travel Guide

History and DesignThe church was designed by one of Icelands most renowned architects, Guðjón Samúelsson, who is said to have sought inspiration for his expressionistic design from elements of Icelandic nature. These include glaciers, mountains and lava formations, particularly the hexagonal basalt columns that surround the waterfall Svartifoss in Skaftafell Nature Reserve, in Vatnajökull National Park. These have influenced the architecture of many structures in Iceland, as well as a whole host of other artistic projects. It is also designed to resemble Thors hammer, with the handle facing up, as a nod to Icelands religious history. The church took 41 years to build, with construction starting in 1945 and finishing in 1986. The leaders of the Church of Iceland wanted a building that would tower over the Catholic Church of Landakotskirkja, also designed by Samúelsson. The large pipe ...

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