Ingólfur Eyfells, son of the artist Jóhann Eyfells, takes us on an in depth tour of the old Icelandic farm of his childhood, recollecting an event that saved his life. This is one of the stories that brings life and texture to A Force in Nature, a biopic of Jóhann Eyfells, an Icelandic sculptor working in the remote Hill Country of Texas.

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Ingólfur Eyfells and Hayden de M. Yates filming in Kalmanstunga, Iceland

http://vimeo.com/52449621

password: “spirals”

The “necessity of chance” is really about accepting GOD in its full unpredictable glory. Jóhann reveals to us the mystery that many of us feebly attempt to explain with reason.

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SPONTANEOUS, YET SLOW IN BIRTH

intentions of man

impelled by active moments of formative forces

conceived in boldness

sanctioned in birth by perception

finding inner consummation

in pinnacled forms of climax

sustained will against random nature

spirit-obsessed impulse of expression

transcending the laws of organic survival

forms of faith-inspired matter-of-factness

belie ritual births measured and slow

in irrational spontaneity of conception

mastered by the whole of experience

skilled intentions exists in sculptured matter

J. Eyfells – Stonehenge – 1964

The Hill Country of Texas is a naturally beautiful setting for creative spirits, and Jóhann Eyfells finds just that in his own backyard. There is a serene yet wild and fierce beauty that resides in this part of the country, which provides the Icelandic sculptor with a constant source of ideas and inspiration. Every spring the Hill Country is host to an amazing fireworks display of wild flowers. These were taken during a particularly explosive season, and are part of the feature length documentary, A Force in Nature, directed and produced by Hayden de M. Yates and edited by Vishwanand Shetti: http://vimeo.com/52449621  password: “spirals”

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(photos by Hayden de M. Yates)

Jóhann is relentless. The blood is a reminder to all of us how alive he is at 91.

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This is Jóhann Eyfells’ best work, according to Jóhann himself. Two entirely different natures brought together in a harmonious way.

“I can’t imagine a more successful combination of two unlikely existences.” Jóhann Eyfells

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Jóhann has been working on a series that involves about 30 tons of steel. This is a project that began in May of this year. I was able to film the process.

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The life and work of Jóhann Eyfells is a constant reminder that “if something can go right, it will go right.” Since the first day I met with my friend Jóhann, almost nine years ago, my life has taken a whole new meaning, and for the better, without a doubt.

JEyfells2See this teaser, A Force in Nature (password: spirals), a feature length documentary film looking at the life and work of Jóhann Eyfells.

I recently spoke to the artist, and as usual, I come away inspired. He called to say that he had some hopeful news coming from Iceland that some individuals are taking a keen interest in his work. He seemed optimistic that more and more people are beginning to understand his vision, “almost to a tee.” Personally speaking, in the 8+ years I’ve known Jóhann, I’ve seldom thought of him as being anything other than optimistic.

As always, he asked how I was faring, and how both my children were. He was especially interested in knowing how my own pursuit of a Master’s degree in Motion Picture & Television Directing was getting on. I told him I was inundated with the richness of academia. With regards to A Force in Nature, I told him we were in full post-production and we expect to be close to finishing.

He paused for a moment and then said the following: “Directing is understanding darkness, silence, and stillness.”  At first, I did not get it, but he proceeded to elaborate and said that “light is a consequence of darkness, sound a consequence of silence, and movement a consequence of stillness.” Because light, sound and movement are so fundamental to the making of any movie, I was now re-engaged, thanks to Jóhann, as I reflect on the role I am playing as a director of our film, A Force in Nature. In short, I was re-ignited by a man almost twice my age as I step away from my own effortless tendency towards complacency.

http://vimeo.com/52449621

password: “spirals”

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I spent all 24 hours with Jóhann, filming him, sleeping at his home and enjoying his presence for an entire stretch of time. It was probably the most intimate I’ve ever got to spend with my dear friend in the 8 1/2 years I’ve known him. I am grateful to him for trusting and allowing me into his most inner sanctuary.

I have grown to love and respect this man who by all account has managed to defy the burden of age and earth’s gravitational pull. For instance, Sunday morning, after wondering what to do next, he decided to do a little gardening on his 11 acre property. The task at hand was to cut down a hundred year old full grown oak tree that had died. The work began early in the morning, and by lunch time the tree had been chopped down by a 91 year old man.

He is unstoppable!

Jóhann the Lumberjack:

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Jóhann the Artist:

Jóhann the Philosopher:

Jóhann the Man:

A Force in Nature – a feature documentary co-produced and directed by Hayden de M. Yates and co-produced and edited by Vishwanand Shetti.

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