The Darkness of Beauty: Interview with Harpa Einarsdóttir

Harpa Einarsdóttir aka Ziska, is an Icelandic artist and fashion designer. Her art is a metamorphosis of darkness, but it also reflects a fusion of elegance and style out of the ordinary. The power of her imagination breathes into empty space, where masks and bodies praise harmonies and meanings. Nature is a scepter of the magic kingdom and emotions are reflected in the shadows. Alienation is nothing new, but an invitation to flee. The art of Harpa is the most beautiful representation of light. Behind the agony it shows a precious life.

Beauty is a creative darkness, a perfect distraction.


From golden showers of the ancient skies,
On the first day, and the eternal snow of stars,
You once unfastened giant calyxes
For the young earth still innocent of scars:
**Excerpt from The Flowers by Stéphane Mallarmé


Do you believe in the speed of a din (deafening noise) or in the reflection of silence?

I have been studying shamanism. The beat of the drum has both qualities. The noise is silent and brings you to different dimensions.

What were your first steps in art and fashion?

Creativity always has been mine, my first fashion illustrations were made at age twelve and my first brand Starkiller was noticed around Europe at a young age. At age thirteen my teachers gave me an extra key too the art class room so I could spend time there by myself whenever I wanted.

Is the past a relationship of the present and a hope for the future?

I am practicing mindfulness so that either past or present can spoil the now. But my past has been a roller coaster and I got myself in situations I don’t really understand, now I feel that I am taking a big leap in spiritual growth. 7 years of craziness are finally over.



All that we see or seem,
Is but a dream within a dream.
**Excerpt from A Dream Within a Dream by Edgar Allan Poe


Artists usually transform their scars into signs, and during their stay perhaps they will be released. What do you think of the evolution of your style? And how does it happen?

As many artists, I am bipolar, it has given me a deeper perspective to reflect my inner world and self knowledge out in the medium. I am not shy to express my emotions in my art. But I have to be honest now that I’m feeling much better in my head I don’t feel as much need to express myself in that way. My inspiration has changed rapidly from dark to light. But I try keep the balance, my main subject has been the ongoing creative storm that penetrates my cells every day. That’s when I look towards the crystallised glaciers and the whiteness of the snow. It calms me.

What have experiences given you and what have they taken away?

I used to storm forward without thinking where I was headed to or who I would hurt in the process. I have hurt myself the most. I do have a wound inside that will never completely heal. But I have stopped dwelling in the melancholy, it takes you nowhere. I’m rising above, I’m endlessly thankful for what I have been given.




What are your dreams, doubts, perplexities?

I dream of being whole in my art my life and relationships. I dream that I can live of my art and also be able to be there for my children. I wish I could stop worrying about next month’s rent and just travel the world. I doubt where we are headed as a human race. But I try to focus on myself, that’s where the change begins.

Do you believe in destiny? And in astonishment?

I do. but I also believe that you can take the wrong path. Anyone who enters your life has something to teach you. Stay open.

What is beauty to you? And art?

To be one with nature. To feel, be in love,to be heartbroken. Art is a life force and exists in everything.

What and who inspires you?

I seek my inspiration everywhere, would have to write a book on that subject.




If you close your eyes what do you see?

Me riding on an endless white beach with a black mane in my hands.

What makes you afraid?

To loose my loved ones.

What it is like living in Iceland?

It’s as good as it is bad. It’s an endless source of energy and inspiration, but living in such a small community can be challenging. It’s easy to get stuck in a corner.






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