The museum includes works of art, old and new, showing volcanic eruptions, as well as objects, artifacts, volcanic rocks from the unique collection of proffessor Haraldur Sigurðsson who has carried out research on volcanoes world wide for forty years.
The volcanologist Haraldur Sigurðsson is born in Stykkishólmur in 1939. When he worked on exdploration drilling as a student he gained an interest in geology. He completed a BSc degree at Queens University in Belfast in 1965, and PhD degree from Durham University in England in 1970. He worked at the University of the West Indies from 1970, conducting research on Caribbean volcanoes.
He was appointed professor at the Graduate School of Oceanography in the University of Rhode Island in 1974. His research has been principally in volcanology, both on land and on the ocean floor. He has worked in Indonesia, Italy, West Indies, USA, West Africa, Greece, South and Central America and elsewhere, as well as on the ocean floor in many regions of earth. In addition to volcano research he has conducted studies on the impact of large meteorites and comets on the earth. His research has been funded by grants from the US National Science Foundation, NASA, National Geographic Society, and NOAA.
Haraldur has published over 160 articles in scientific journals. He has also published two books on volcanology for the general reader: Encyclopedia of Volcanoes (Academic Press) and Melting the Earth (Oxford University Press). Haraldur has received a number of awards, from the Geological Society of America, Iceland Science Society, University of Utrecht, London Geological Society and Order of the Falcon from the President of Iceland.
Haraldur has collected information on the evolution of science with respect to volcano research for many years. A result of that was his book Melting the Earth. He then formed an interest in volcano art, the representation of volcanic eruptions in art. An outcome of that is the collection that is exhibited here in the Volcano Museum.