In Scandinavia’s most ancient literature, there exists primordial giants whose actions - and very being - are identified with the origin and creation of the world. Engendered in the great chasm called Ginnungagap, where the frozen waters of the cold-realm Niflheim and the hot breath of the fire-realm Muspel met, the frost giant Ymir and a cow named Audumla were the first created beings. In this creation story, the combination of fire and ice made life possible: some mysterious life grew and thrived in the drops of melting water, which took the form of the giant Ymir. Called jätte (yett-uh) in Swedish, troll or jutul (yoo-tool) in Norwegian, trolls and giants are prominent in fables and in etiological legends explaining the origin of many huge rock formations, lakes and the so-called giants potholes. The Norwegian word ‘jutul’ stems from the Old Norse Jotunn, which denotes a race of giants in opposition to man and gods.

From the pine-laden mountains and prosperous farms of the Vågå region in Norway to imperial Copenhagen, from the jagged-peaks and moss-laden cliffs of Iceland’s West-fjords to the immense vertical sea cliffs of the Faroe Islands, we will hear tales of earth-sculpting colossal beings.