Thursday, 30 January 2014

Museum Mission: Bonniers Konsthall

Only you can tell if I caught the spirit of this exhibition by the scholarship winner Andreas Eriksson at Bonniers Konsthall / The Bonnier Art Hall (my translation). I really liked it, that is. I would say it is catches the feeble senses, the senses that are hard to understand that one is using at this very moment. For example, do you see the cabin in the painting above?
This is a piece that just by looking at it like this perhaps gives no meaning, but comes alive with a kick once you approach it and find out the technique behind it. It is foam plastic treated - painted - with acid that has served as a template for this plaster canvas, meaning that the non-flat parts of this "painting" actually are cavities: you are watching empty space. Also, when I at first thought it was foam plastic covered with gypsum, I had the impression of this being the perfect combination of something airy and something heavy at the same time.
This was great: one of the museum's walls is of glass, showing the landscape of a railway station in plain air from above. When the railway tracks were covered with snow, the artist took pictures which served as templated for a weaving company, and this is one of the result. Note that the thread is white, and that the shadows are given by the reliefs of the happenings in the picture. In this way, the woven painting is interacting directly with the outside of the museum, immediately giving the exhibition and the space it is in vast dimensions.
Houses on the road of the artist's home, built firstly as standard houses but later on adapted and shaped and changed following the owners' wills and needs. The neighbours tell their stories and every second screen shows the interior.
Probably my favourite (top three candidate) piece. It depicts the change of light when a car passes by a window; the shadows are spot on and make me... relaxed, oddly enough.
Another favourite detail. Below: how the art hall looks from the outside.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Going with the wind (a nice Hitchcock and art and zoology combined)

Today I visited five (5) museums, and on the bridge to the royal castle, the wind started blowing, which made all the birds that were surfing the miniature waves suddenly rise and stay still in the air with their wings open into poetic embraces. It really was a stunning play just right in front of me. Having hunted for the opportunity to take photos of birds with their wings open since for ever, I took as many as I could while the short
moment lasted, offering my fingers to the cold.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

(Like a) Saga

Some cinemas have a really nice interior and are in a double sense time machines: seeing a film and taking part of its story is a journey, and then they are an alternative to the era of downloading - a place where our grandparents also went for a date or to look hip. This cinema is found at Kungsgatan and is called Saga. Rightly so.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Wait, that was how many pictures?..

 Guess how many pictures we took, Lucas says.

 2,000? (It is an exaggerated guess for my part, we have only been here for two hours, I mean.) Lucas shakes his head. It is not too far away from the truth, though.
Having found out there are 950 photos of me, the natural reaction is of course to rake more pictures. This time of Lucas. This is a pretty hot photo, no?
And an even more natural reaction is to look for new angles to take EVEN MORE photos.

Museum Mission: Gustavsbergs porslinsmuseum

Gustavsbergs porslinsmuseum / The Prorcelain Museum of Gustavsberg is a new favourite museum of mine! It takes a while to get to Gustavsberg, though, so do maximize your stay by also visiting the port and the art halls nearby.

Jörgen Haugen Sörensen's art work does not leave one untouched, both due to the upsetting themes and because he creates realistic, perfect details perallel with a chaos of mud and colours.
Another word for porcelain is, at certain places, "white gold".
The process of making porcelain turns out to be very fascinating. It is in a way a very soft crafting, with gracelike movements as a result of a habit turned into perfection after many years' work within one's specialization. There are concise and laconic short movies demonstrating this, leaving me stunned to see that paintings on plates and the china are not made using ultra thin brushes, but are transferred from very thin paper.

About a minute of walking away from the museum, next to the watermill, there is a porcelain factory and a shop, which is open a bit longer than the museum, where one can see a video of how the process looks like today. The production is till these days not entirely automatic, and the poetic movement of attaching a handle to a cup - I seriously believe that this should be mentioned more often in litterature - has survived for yet another century.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

What I wore this winter (super fancy photoshoot)

Let us see what I will thin of these photographies in twenty years time :) All photos taken by David Härenstam.

Friday, 24 January 2014

Museum Mission: Stadsmuseet (former Stockhoms stadsmuseum)

Stockholm, Stockholm, Stockholm! The buildings and the people are the most prominent features of a city, which is portraited in a peculiar building in itself: Stadsmuseet / The City Museum, which is both below and above the ground level, depending on from which direction one looks at it. In front of its entrance, do not forget to touch the statue of the planet Mercury: it is warm, in order to demonstrate how close it is to the sun (and the stage the Globe serves as the sun in this scale model).
Being inside the museum is like being inside a city: it is easy to get lost, there are lamps and signs, there are blind alleys, there are several staircases to the same floor...
Excavations always seem to tell us more than documents. The model of what the royal castle in the middle of Stockholm used to look like, for example, is mainly based on the archeological results made in the beginning of the 20th century.
If one's apartment was on fire, this was the sign one put up on the door to show that one needed help.
Some famous buildings: the globe, Kaknästornet, Stadshuset.
The famous former Swedish king Gustav Vasa watching the epoques.
What made my camera act blurry in this museum is a mystery, but the main content is that though being a very nice building and giving an insight in what interiors and exteriors used to look like, this is not a museum that is heavily loaded with information and should probably not be a priority during a quick visit to Stockholm.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Days in Uppsala

I am currently overwhelmed by the beauty of this city (and the cost of the course litterature!). Wherever one goes, there is a new building to discover, fantastic in its own way - Blåsenhus looking like a quadratic spaceship above a round spaceship on the inside, or the main university building being so majestetic - and then the churchbells ringing when running late to class throws one back hundreds of years: this is how the students back in the days felt!  

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Today's afternoon at a glance

The blurry object behind Lucas' left shoulder is a carpenter passing by making a v-sign, how funny that was! We went to see the royal castle and I have loads of pictures from one of its parts, otherwise photographies are not permitted without a special permission  from the court.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014


I got fined on the train to Uppsala for not having enough tickets, and when the clerk demanded for my name he also wanted to see my ID card. Upon seeing my age, he uttered:
"Oh, you are old enough [for a certain kind of fee]." By that judgement, I could be taken for eight years younger my age.

Well. Age matters. To some. (In particular, it is of interest to match it with a face.) My students, usually aged 12 or 17-19 (no one else asks, or less frequently) are at times extremely fascinated by my age as a teacher. It is really interesting to see their disappointment (aged 12) when I tell them the number right away, without any particular tone. With the older students, I made it a science: you know the phenomena of when adding everbodys' guesses of a certain number and dividing that number by the number of people who made the guess, which ends up giving a pretty accurate figure? It worked that time too.

Age discrimination is a different aspect. An acquintance of mine has a tendency to look young, and was once accused, based on his looks, of that he had too little experience in a field.
"Excuse me? I have been working with this the past 20 years", he answered.
Age discrimination is, among all the other discriminations there can be, prevailing even among small children, according to a study our professor in a totally different field made flash by. We tend to behave in that way because we connect wisdom with age, but those factors are not as linearly related as some of us seem to perceive in our daily lifes. That is an evidence of us not keeping up with that many generations now have a better and greater access to all kinds of information, and that many people have experiences such as being exchange students or are simply rich in experience because of other reasons. We just must not be too indoctrinated in adultism, adultcentricism, adultocracy, gerontocracy and a zest of ephebiphobia and lose out the potential in the youngsters around us. 

Monday, 20 January 2014

The Postcard War in its real sense: from France in 1942

 It is sent digitally, though, but is nevertheless brilliant. Thank you, M.B.!
(And as usual, some of the previous postcard wars to be found here, here and here. And a battle here.)