The Reykjavik School of Visual Arts

The Reykjavík School of Visual Arts, founded in 1947, is a non-profit organisation operated by artists and designers. The school has been recognised by the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture as a private school on upper secondary level since 2000 when an agreement was made with the Ministry regarding art education on the secondary level covering general courses and a full time foundation course in visual art. In 2008 the School started a diploma degree programme in ceramics on the 4th level according to The Icelandic Qualification Framework (5th level according to the European Framework), based on an agreement with the Reykjavik Technical College. Two additional diploma programmes, Drawing and Textiles, were started in 2010. In 2011 the school started a two year artistic study programme towards matriculation examinations which has also been recognised by the Ministry of Education. In 2015 the School started a two year diploma programme in visual arts for students with intellectual disabilities.  

A service contract between the School and the Reykjavík City Education Service Centre was signed 2004, providing for professional art education for students from preschool up to secondary school age. An atmosphere of flow and an exchange of ideas between departments is encouraged and works by students in different age groups are continually on show in the school building.


  • Ceramics - a two year diploma programme
  • Drawing - a two year diploma programme
  • Textiles - a two year diploma programme
  • Painting - a two year diploma programme
  • Foundation studies in art – a one year programme
  • Artistic studies towards matriculation examination – a two year programme
  • Visual arts – a two year diploma programme for students with intellectual disabilities


  • General art courses for adults
  • Art courses for children and youth

There are around 120 students enrolled each term in the school‘s daily study programs and approximately 600 students doing single courses. The school has cooperated with many Icelandic cultural institutions such as various museums, schools and libraries, education centres and associations.

International relations are increasingly cultivated through projects, joint programs and exchanges of students and teachers.
The school initiated two EU-Leonardo da Vinci projects: Knowhow (link to pdf booklets: 1 - 2 - 3 - 4) and Knowhow 2  (link to pdf booklet), and continues to develop projects and collaborations abroad on all school levels. The school was awarded the „Erasmus + VET Mobility Charter“ 2015-2020 by the Icelandic Erasmus+ National Agency. The Charter recognizes the operational capacity of the school to manage high quality mobility projects. .