Introduction

I am Gerdien Wolthaus Paauw, professional documentary photographer, based in The Netherlands. Fueled by the collapse of the Icelandic internetbank Icesave in October 2008, and its devastating effects on the Dutch and British banking systems and the Icelandic society, I embarked on this project Day for Night – a photographic quest for sustainable economics.
View introduction film on YouTube

In Summer 2009 and Winter 2010 I travelled to Iceland where I portrayed and interviewed 38 Icelanders from all over the country. Furthermore, I captured Iceland’s powerful landscapes that ‘remind us’ of the origin of the world, the earth we derive from and depend on. I photographed these landscapes during the bright and energizing summer nights and short winter days. In my project ‘Day for Night’ the light also has a symbolic meaning. In my opinion the current recession, this economically dark period, may turn into a day which may inspire us to review our consumer choices, banking system and financial responsibilities. It may give us an opportunity to enter into respectful international relationships and to value slow interest and sustainable profit.

Icelandic philosopher and big thinker, professor Páll Skúlason is well known for his thoughts on Ethics of Nature and Technologism. I am very grateful for his contribution to this website. Please feel free to download my correspondence with Páll Skúlason. You may use this correspondence for non-commercial purposes only. If you quote the text, please do respect our copyrights by publishing our names and this link: http://www.day-for-night.com Thank you.
Iceland PallSkulason-GerdienWolthausPaauw.pdf


The Icesave Facts: 2008-2013
Monday 28 January 2013. Iceland has won its legal battle to avoid paying back the Dutch and British governments for money paid to savers who lost out when internet bank Icesave went bankrupt in 2008. The European free trade association (Efta) court dismissed all claims against Iceland, saying the directive did not apply to a ‘systemic crisis of the magnitude experienced in Iceland’. The court also said Iceland had not discriminated between Icelandic savers and those from the Netherlands or Britain. The case arose following the 2008 bankruptcy of Landsbanki, the ‘Mother Bank’ of Icesave. Icesave was an internet bank operating only abroad, which attracted thousands of savers from the Netherlands and Britain by offering high interest rates. After the bank collapsed, the Dutch and British governments effectively paid back savers under the banking deposit guarantee scheme and then asked Iceland for the money back. Although the Icelandic government first agreed, the demand was rejected in two referendums. Landsbanki’s estate has now paid back some 90% of the money and is expected to repay the remainder, Icelandic officials say. Iceland owed € 1.3bn to the Netherlands and € 2.5bn to Britain.