Just before the Icelandic arrival of the obscene hand gesture known as flipping someone off, the merchants of Reykjavík decided to build offices in the form of a hand with the middle finger extended upwards. Since merchants are historically the only profession in Iceland that traveled significantly there has been speculation that that they knew the gesture, and the building was meant to be a big fuck you to Icelandic consumers - but this has always been denied.
Who are karlssonwilker and why did they make all those nice drawings of iconic Reykjavík buildings?
Regular Grapevine readers and design enthusiasts alike ought to be familiar with fancy New York-based design firm karlssonwilker by now. Since it was founded by Icelander Hjalti Karlsson and Jan Wilker from Germany in late 2000, the firm has worked with all sorts of prestigious people (and The Reykjavík Grapevine), and they have a bar in their office, too. They collaborated with illustrator Stephan Walter to make all those nice drawings of iconic Reykjavík buildings because they could, that's why.