Hlemmur Square Mural
The Hlemmur mural borrows the typography from the hostel’s outdoor sign and seeks inspiration in its colourful logo. The leaves are from ætihvönn (angelica archangelica), which is a powerful medicinal herb that grows all around Iceland. The positive properties of this flower symbolically greet travellers looking for accommodation. The flowers are garðasól (papaver croceum). It is a foreign species called by the beautiful name “garden sun” which quickly spread across the country, like the many visitors of Hlemmur Square. The birds are starri (sturnum vulgaris). While certain birds are greatly admired in Icelandic culture, such as the raven that has numerous rhymes and folk songs singing its praises, the common starling shits on your shoulder as you await your hot dog. It is a little reminder that Icelandic natural elements need to be treated with certain caution and humour.