By spotogspindel | April 23, 2015
The 2015 collection of tote-bags are on their way! I just got the fabric with my art printed on it, and am in the process of sewing them together. Even though I know pretty well how to do it by now, it sure takes time to get them done anyway.
By spotogspindel | April 22, 2015
The students at Bømlo Folk High School arrange a Peace-festival every year. This is the 19th year, and this year´s theme is “Refugees”.
Bømlo Folk High School is the school I thought at for 13 years, so naturally it´s close to my heart. I have so many wonderful memories from this place, moments with the students, and with my colleagues, many of them dear friends still. I´ve learned so much here!
But I was going to tell you about the Festival. The very first festival was arranged in 1996 and was part of a theatre-project, a staging of the musical HAIR, which I was the production manager of. Back at work, I argued strongly for the school to take over the idea, and make it an annual thing, as I thought it would be a great way for the students to – learn more about war and peace, and all the issues related to it- and to learn practically how to make a big arrangement by simply doing it. We had a different focus every year, but the main theme remained the same.
(What is peace by the way? Is it a calm and passive state of non-conflict? I think not. I think it is a very active state or will. You have to not only want it, but work actively for it. It is not a constant, and it needs to be continuously reviewed, to make sure it is a good as it can be and is not threatened by conflicts.)
The festival took on a form of two-day happening. First day, schools and kindergartens come and participate in different activities. Second day is open for the public, and filled with interesting talks, exhibitions, discussions, lectures… and it all ends with a big concert.
Even though it´s been almost 8 years since I left the school, this is the one trace I am very proud to have left behind, the introduction of the Peace Festival.
So now, 8 years later, when I am asked to show some of my art at an exhibition there, of course I had to come!
The theme was as mentioned “People fleeing” or “Refugees”, and I found it very difficult to make art around this sad theme. But then I thought of what it would be if it was me. What if I had to flee and leave everything behind. And with this in mind I made three pictures called “My life without me”. All freestyle machine-embroidered on linen.
When you look at the news these days, I am grateful that every year 80 ordinary, young people work intensely with this theme, bringing awareness to themselves and the people around them.
By spotogspindel | April 20, 2015
Skandi Africa is the newest and biggest offshore-vessel in DOF. It´s 33 meters wide and 130 meters long! (Thats´108 feet wide and 426 feet long). It is currently in the Netherlands, where a giant crane and an even bigger tower is being mounted. The crane alone can lift 900 tons! It is huge, this ship! I feel so honored to be one of three artists chosen to decorate this ship.
(Read more about the ship by clicking the picture above)
I´ve been onboard for three days now, getting everything up (around 140 pictures all together). With me I had Elise, who´s the head procurment-manager for the ship. And such a delight to work with. I am happy to take you on a little art-tour of the ship
Let´s start in the mess. It´s the biggest of the common-areas rooms, with seating for 110. The color-scheme is light green, and we pieced pictures to match and contrast. My pictures are matched with Kyrre Møgster´s oil-paintings of people around the world.
“Ustadige Skudenes/unreliable Skudenes”, 60×90 cm
There is accommodation for 140 people onboard, and I can reveal that they will not go hungry. The chefs onboard are excellent!
“Oselvarbaug/row-bow”, 50×60 cm
“The secret garden”, 40×40 cm
Right by the mess is the recreation-room, one of the busier lounges.
In addition to The star-gazer by Kyrre Møgster, I have 5 pictures this room.
“The smell of childhood summers”, 60×90 cm
“Yellow seahouse”, 50×60 cm
“Row of sea-houses”, 45×90 cm
“Espevaer”, 50×60 cm
“Huddling houses”, ca 50x 60 cm
Moving up 3 stories, the captain´s lounge is another of the main gathering areas for free time relaxation. The modern splash of color behind the TV is a good match with my picture next to it.
The windows here add so much light, stretching from floor to ceiling.
“Njørd rowingclub”, 60x80cm
Another wall in the same lounge. I made a relief-series of the history of shipping. A bit abridged. From the stone age, via the viking-ships, the sailing-ships, a steamer and finally a DOF offshore-vessel.
They are all digital photo collage, printed on and cut in aluminum.
A detail from the stone age.
Yet another lounge. The theme here is people of the world, and it is held in blue and purple hues.
My two pictures are Japanese. Two young girls dressed in traditional kimonos.
And a real samurai warrior in all his gear. Both ca 40×60 cm
The lady is painted by Kyrre Møgster. The arrow-heads I made in raku-pottery. A little close-up:
Moving on to the smokers lounge. The lounges are lying next to each other, with windows between them, which makes it both much lighter and more social.
“Siggjo”, 50×100 cm
In the library I also have 6 pictures.
First, the old history of Bergen, represented with these two pictures, printed on brushed aluminum.
“Bergen 1″, 40×60 cm
“Bergen 2″, 40×60 cm
“Bergen Panorama”, 35×70 cm +35×70 cm
This picture is devided into two halves, and is a modern day picture of how Bergen is now. Originally this and some of the other pictures were made for a ship called Skandi Bergen, and the Captain wanted some pictures from the city. This ship was sold, and the art meant for it was transferred to this ship.
A room is never complete without some naked rock faces
“Salty treasures”, 50×60 cm
“A long days night towards spring”, ca 40×40 cm
A detail of the wooden mosaic. Cut pieces of oak, 4×4 cm, are painted separately and glued down on a hidden wooden board.
One floor up is the officers deck, with the Captain´s cabin and office. The room has big windows, from ceiling to floor, and is filled with light. The furniture is also light.
He chose the pictures he liked best, and picked this acrylic painting of a little boat lying safely at harbor in the fog.
“Foggy afternoon”, 45×90 cm
“Help is on the way”, 50×60 cm
A captain is also head of security, so this safety-belt/ring was a natural choice.
Moving on to the chief and his cabin.
He´s got a starfish clinging to an old, rusty anchor and a close-up from a sailing-ship.
“Hanging in there”, 50×60 cm
This is from one of the clients´s cabins.
All the cabins are beautifully decorated, with leather sofas and chairs, stereo/tv/computer, a desk, and a bed of course.
“Geitung”, 60×80 cm
“Floating”, 50×60 cm
The Captain and Elise in front of the big yellow tower that will be mounted on deck. The Captain took us on a tour of the ship before we left, and I am in awe of all the knowledge needed that culminates in building a ship like this.
The ship doesn´t get baptized until August, they still need some time to mount the big crane and tower on deck. But it´s not to early for me to wish them the best of luck with all the future voyages!
By spotogspindel | April 17, 2015
Correct answer: I´m in Rotterdam! It is one of the biggest ports in the world, but it´s hard to see, everything is flat here in Holland. My travel-compagnon tells me it was an important port already in the 14th century. And I know that tzar Peter the Great lived incognito here in the late 17th century, learning how to build ships.
I am onboard DOF´s newest and grandest ship Skandi Africa. I´ve been here a couple of days now, working on hanging all the artwork onboard. (There is a big post in the making about that soon.) Even if you can´t see much of how big the port really is, the address gives me a clue: Harbor 561. Which means that there are at least over 560 different harbors here…
By spotogspindel | April 15, 2015
Guess where I am?!
I´ll give you a clue: it´s one of the biggest ports in the world!
I´ll give you another clue: that´s my shoes in the picture. And 17 meters below me there is water.
I´ll tell you tomorrow
By spotogspindel | April 11, 2015
Tonight is the premiere of “The Salmon Conveyer” (Lakselinja). Bømlo Teater is staging Nina Sele´s show.
It´s an original piece, a mix between dance-theatre and theatre. It´s repetitive, almost meditative. Is there such a thing as meditation-theatre? But there are also funny parts, sad parts and mad parts.
The salmons in the background is an underwater film that keeps on going. The salmon look like they´re dancing to the same music as the actors. It´s really beautiful! The film was taken inside a salmon cage at a local salmon farm. (Thank you so much, Terje!)
At one point there is a breakdown of the machinery.
Who you gonna call?! The fixer! (danced by Nina)
Man against the machine. Ooo… this is my favorite music!
All the music is written originally by Hans Olav Molde, and it just fits the story and the set beautifully! I truly wish you could hear it, it´s magical! It´s based on actual factory-sounds at the salmon conveyor line, and added beats and music and moods on top.
In the cantina at break-time. You´re almost half-way in the show before the actors start talking, planning their Christmas party. Which is more like a tutti-frutti-party, with it´s punch-fountain and umbrella-drinks.
Joakim added beautiful light and worked with setting the film. He´s such a wiz!
A bit about the set. It includes 900 styrofoam-boxes, some places stacked as high as 8 meters. Styrofoam is not exactly environmentally friendly, but every single one of these boxes will be recycled. They have a short travel, made only 3 kilometers from the culture house, where they will go back and get a new life next week.
And what is the story about?
All these different people, working side by side on the conveyor line. What are they thinking about? What goes on in their minds? Here are some possible scenarios:
“Yes, you can have ice-cream. But only call me at work if it´s really important!”
“Add vinegar and sugar, let it marinate with herbs….”
“Should I let my daughter travel alone? Is it safe?”
“We had good times. She cooked me food, I went on a country-festival with my friends…”
“I want to travel the world, see, explore!”
“What if, one day, the perfect salmon came along, and I fell in love?!!”
“I wonder what he´s feeding the cat. Probably the most expensive cat-food!”
“Should I really teach math for the rest of my life? I thought to myself in the middle of a math-class”
Staged by Bømlo Teater in Bømlo Culture-house
Script and direction: Nina Sele
Original music and sound: Hans Olav Molde
Choreography: Simba Dzowa
Scenography: Janne Robberstad
Light-design: Joakim Foldøy
By spotogspindel | April 8, 2015
For the Salmon Conveyor set I made three cocktail-umbrella lampshades for the party-scene. Here is a little DIY-guide, so you cn make your very own party-lamp.
You need a rice-paper lampshade (they have affordable ones at IKEA), about 250 cocktail umbrellas for a shade with 50 cm in diameter. A hot glue-gun with plenty of glue and pliers that can cut wood.
Step one is to open the umbrellas, and put a dot of glue to secure the open position. When it´s cooled down, I use the pliers to cut the excess wooden “stem”. Then add a new dot of glue to the end and place it on the rice paper of the lampshade. Let the umbrellas overlap each other to completely cover the white paper.
The glue will need a little time to cool down, so it´s a good idea to do each step to a good bunch of umbrellas at a time. Glueing the umbrellas to the shade,you will probably need to hold it in place long enough for the glue to cool down, so the umbrella does´t glide.
And here it is! All done, with a single lightbulb inside it (not stronger than 40 watts). The light sifts throughout the colored paper and makes quite a cosy atmosphere. Tutti-frutti-part-time!
By spotogspindel | April 7, 2015
I´ve known for a long time now, and am happy to finally share with you the great news! I am appearing in Dawn DeVries Sokol´s new book A World of Artist Journal Pages. I haven´t seen the book myself yet, as it doesn´t release until April 21st. Some of the pages featured will be from my travel journal in 2011, when I was traveling in Mexico with my friend Anita. I think there might also be a little interview with me in there. There are journal-pages from over 200 artists from all over the world in the book, so it´s a real treat. Even before I´ve seen it, I am sure I can recommend it to you all!
(click the book, to get to the Amazon-link)
And on a more personal level: How cool is it to type your own name into the search-engine at Amazon.com, and there´s a hit!?! I´ll tell you! It´s über-cool! I can´t wait to get the book, see it and read it!
By spotogspindel | April 6, 2015
Today was the move-in day on the stage for The Salmon Conveyor. 900 styrofoam-boxes. 500 meters of blank tape. 36 meters of wax-cloth. 70 square meters rented dance-floors. And about 600 cocktail-umbrellas.
The director, Nina, is using the opportunity to do the jazz-hands-dance behind a row of styrofoam-boxes. These are the actual boxes the salmon is packed in, when being shipped.
Piles and piles of boxes. We needed a lift to get them all in place. The highest rows are almost 8 meters high.
The set itself may seem sane, but it feels more than a little strange to say out loud that we´ve taped the set together. That is CRAZY! Totally insane. The styrofoam hardly weighs anything, so it actually holds in place with tape. Insane, I tell you. Insane…
It´s coming together. The side-walls are also rows of styrofoam-boxes. The top-curtains are actually cheap kitchen oilcloth, which matches the dance-floor.
The opening is Friday, so I´ll post pictures then of the completed set.
By spotogspindel | April 2, 2015
I am at the start of a big embroidery-project, including several exhibitions. Imagine my joy when I found this lovely, old embroidered prayer at my local charity-shop! There is no written information on the back, but there is some embroidered on: March 23, 1901 G.B. It´s probably been made by a young girl, as an exercise-piece when she was first learning to embroider. This is so, so cool!