HallgrÍmur Helgason was born in Reykjavík, Iceland, in 1959. He attended the Art and Craft School of Iceland and the Akademie für die Bildenden Künste in Germany. A successful artist, he has had solo shows around the world, including Paris, New York and Boston. He is the author of four novels, including HELLA, Höfundur Íslands (The Author of Iceland), which won the 2002 Icelandic Prize for Literature, and 101 Reykjavík, which was translated into nine languages and adapted into an internationally acclaimed motion picture in 2000. He is also an award-winning playwright, cartoonist, poet, stand-up comedian and translator.