Saturday, January 27, 2007

Lindberg revisited - Plastic design

As I was staying at a nearby hotel, I had a couple of hours free so I could not resist seeing the Stig Lindberg exhibition at Nationalmuseum again (see September 30 entry).

This time I watched the 3 short movies that were run continuously. One of them, "Industry visit" from Swedish television on April 25 1957 was an interview with Lindberg. He talked about Gustavsberg as a creative place. At this factory, plastic was an important industrial material so it was natural also for the ceramics designers to work with it and create beatiful and functional every-day things. (They did not themselves talk about beauty, only of "smartness".)

Lindberg became one of the pioneers for design in plastic. One example was the thermos "Termic" which was produced from 1957 until 1975! It was found in most Swedish homes over 2 generations.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Stig Lindberg - the Joker and the Lady

The Karneval series from 1958 - 1962 is typical Lindberg imagery. It contains a large number of images - trays as well as vases. The series is now popular for collecting and I have noted that prices in England and USA on these and other Lindberg works are even higher than in Sweden. One sales site is found here.

It is supposed to be a kind of reminiscence of the faience period at Gustavsberg ceramic factory up through the 50's. It is however made in serial production and not individually designed items.

The harlequin can be compared to the joker of the deck of cards (See entry Dec 28). This one has a more childish and innocent appearance. Maybe he has escaped from one of Picasso's circus paintings.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Winter, finally?

The ground under my car still did not bear any witness of snowfall as of this morning. And at the coast, there has been less ice this January than ever, since mid 1800's when records started. Today, though, it seems that winter is catching up at last.

Storm has hit southern Sweden today, even resulting in casualties. Up North, we are not so unfortunate, and only have a reasonably heavy snowfall. It feels as if time has turned right. Now just let us see if the white cover will stay with us.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

A Russian to remember

Jevgenij Zamjatin is an early 20th century Russian author who deserves a better fate than to be forgotten. Therefore it is excellent that one of his short novels, "The story about the most important", recently has been translated to Swedish and published by the small editorial Ruin.

I have already mentioned the science fiction novel We by Zamjatin (November 22 entry). This is an amazing work in many aspects. We are now presenting some more of his writing from the insect perspective, and in particular the new book which has a central insect theme.

Just like Jan Larri (see June 14 entry) he was bold enough to write to Stalin. Writing without restraining himself, and publishing We abroad, he ended up accused of being counter-revolutionary, although he had long been a devoted communist. Surprisingly he survived and was allowed to emigrate.

Read more in part 26 of the Literature history of insects in
the recent issue of Natur i Norr! (In Swedish)

Drawing by Juri Annenkov 1921

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Mussels and Caviar - Chiloë 2001

Chonchi is known as la ciudad de los tres pisos because of its peculiar topography. In this harbour town we found some of the best seafood in all of Chiloë (and Chile). At restaurant El Trebol, we had very fresh and fine Mussels in Salsa Verde, and delicious Locos.

At another place, we started a conversation with three young men who all worked in the salmon industry. One of them suddenly disappeared, only to return after a while, bringing a small plastic package with Japanese writing. He gave us the package and asked us to taste the content. The guy had gone back to his work to get a sample of salmon caviar, produced for the Japanese market. It was very good, almost like Russian caviar, but, of course, bright red.

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