English Summary of akvarellen 2-2008

KERSTI RÅGFELDT STRANDBERG (Sweden)
By Jacqueline Stare

Kersti Rågfeldt Strandberg is a real colourist and works ethereally and thin with plenty of water, shimmering surfaces that spread and suddenly she lets the clarity and light collide with firm forms where the lines demarcate like walls and/or powerful colour fields with streaks of white or black or which have even been condensed with features of gouache. Kersti Rågfeldt Strandberg sees the spaciality in her pictures, big and small surfaces, like a kind of shelter, places where to catch one´s breath, hideaways where one can seek shelter as well as make time stop and get new strength on one´s own. Oriental motifs are an immportant source of inspiration to her. She lived in Syria for a year and was then captivated by the display of colour and scenery which she met in many various ways. The many thousand-year old Egyptian art is another important source.

 

TOM KRESTESEN (Sweden)
By Jacqueline Stare

Tom Krestesen´s art always deals - in one or the other way - with life and with death. The older he gets the more aware, if possible, he has become of the fragility of life and the responsibility we have to make the most of our lives, make the most of what is good. Tom Krestensen paints downright watercolours sometimes, true, but he mainly uses watercolour together with tempera, not least in his "portraits" and in his landscapes. At Österlen in the south of Sweden, where he spends his summers, he becomes a quite different person. There the nature embraces him with the quite special light and it fills him with tranquility and happiness and one landscape after the other takes form. The ties to Denmark and Danish art are insoluble even if Tom Krestesen has lived in Sweden the major part of his life. He has exhibited in Denmark innumerable times.

 

PETTER PETTERSSON (Sweden)
By Lasse Sandström

Petter Pettersson is a multi artist. He paints watercoloiurs, casts bronze sculptures, draws with coal, makes woodcuts and giant textile figures. - It is a rotation of usage, I do not have time to get stuck in any of the techniques, he says. Watercolour attracts me a lot. That is similar to the bronze castings. It runs and flows, one does not steer it particularly much and one does not know in advance how it will be, thank heavens! His art has been shown at a number of galleries in Sweden and abroad. To the initiated person he is well known, but he is surprisingly disregarded by the general public considering his great influence on oter artists, which probrably is a state of affairs that he likes.

 

INGER WIHL and ARNE ISACSSON - The watercolour as model
By Jacqueline Stare

A number of years ago, Arne Isacsson painted a watercolour collage "Winter Cathedrals", which he felt immediately could be a model of a big fabric. He asked Inger Wihl, who is a textile stylist as well as watercolourist, to weave a part of it on trial. She managed to give a feeling of richness and poetry in her small woven sample. She worked very freely and used several different techniques. The two artists agreed that she should weave "Winter Cathedrals", which was completed in 1992. It measured 240x340 cm. It is a highly free fabric and contains, i.a., twenty-one different grey shades and yarns of greatly differing qualities. The fabric "Homage à Arne Isacsson" is originally fetched from a colourful watercolour that depicts the blossoming garden of Inger Wihl´s daughter. In that fabric, as well as some others in various sizes which we look at in her studio, together with the models - most often watercolours - it is so clear that the one who has made the fabrics must have an intimate knowledge of the extremely subtile nuances and forms that can be produced with the watercolour technique. She never follows the models slavishly, in the textile interpretation that medium dominates of course, but she often manages to bring forward an interaction between the two techniques with which she works, a kind of symbiosis in the best sense.

 

TOMAS NORDBERG (Sweden)
By Jacqueline Stare

Tomas Nordberg paints all his watercolours mainly in the summer. He belongs to the artists who change if they are not satisfied. He takes to a scrubbing brush as well as the high pressure sprayer when he goes over his paintings. Some pigments bite more than others and remain as a - highly conscious - bottom layer when he again sets about his washed painting. In recent years, Tomas Nordberg has started to work with the computer and builds up visual rooms, sceneries which he populates with figures. His technique is complicated and it is important to stay updated because it changes all the time. Tomas Nordberg alternates betweeen today´s most advanced computer techniques and new materials and many centuries old ways of working with painting and sculpture and finds bridges. Many exciting meetings arise when you work in that way.

 

The non-verbal poetry of HARPA ARNADOTTIR (Iceland)
By JBK Ransu

Harpa Arnadóttir was born in Bildudalus in 1965, a village on the northwestern coast of Iceland. Being "lyrical" means taking a stand against "industrial", say, like the minimalistic works of Donald Judd or Dan Flavin. Harpa Arnadóttir´s way of working is more an organic process. In her paintings she uses layers of waterdissolving pigment and glue that eventually crack and mould their own landscape-like structure of canvas. In Harpa´s latest works we see even more colour, a more gestrual way of painting, more forms floating in time and space. These paintings are reminiscent of nature´s vast organism, a microcosmos and macrocosmos, an introvert and an extrovert world.

 

JOHAN RAMBERG (Sweden)
By Lasse Sandström

Johan Ramberg has attended watercolour courses led by Arne Isacsson, Hasse Karlsson and Anders Wallin. He is basically a trained graphic artist. During a course in India he started to paint town milieus. Now he often has people and cars in the paintings. He finds it more and more pleasant to paint life. Johan Ramberg seldom sits outdoors and paints in front of the motifs. First, he photographs and then he paints from the photographs. Watercolour painting has always appealed to him. He has tested oil as well but thinks it is too heavy. - The watercolour has a life of its own, things happen. It is unpredictable. One must be a friend of the watercolour god. It necessitates a kind of a spontaneously planned attitude. In addtion, it also becomes so unbelievably beautiful.

 

THE ANNUAL MEETING in Aalborg, March 29
By Jacqueline Stare

There were a number of us who now left the board (Raija Wallenius, Kjell Ekström, Petri Hytönen, Arthur Ragnarson and Jacqueline Stare). Trond Einar Solberg Indsetviken was elected chairman and Torild Inger Börritzen, also from Norway, was elected with special responsibility for international contacts. Maya Rygaard, Sweden, was elected member of the board, as were Carolus Enckell (Finland) and Ingibjörg Gunlaugsdóttir (Iceland). The new election commmittee now consists of Kjersti Eliassen (Norway), Anne Liedholt-Jensen (Denmark) and Eva Sandström (Sweden). The perhaps most important proposed alteration of rules is that a board member can sit only two + two years. We thus get a lowering from six to four years if our proposal will be sanctioned at the next annual meeting.

 

ARNE ISACSSON´s PRIZE 2008
By Peter V. Nielsen

The Danish artist Poul Anker Bech was awarded Arne Isacsson´s Prize at the annual meeting in Aalborg on March 29, 2008, for his work with renewal of the surrealist art.

 

A WATERCOLOUR RELAY

started in the form of a workshop at the Värmland Museum in Karlstad, March 8-9, 2008. That is hopefully the start of a watercolour relay which we hope will run through the Nordic countries. Our theme was: "Collision". The idea of this workshop was to encourage play and experiment with watercolour and also to test new untraditional tools and methods and to let oneself be inspired by one another. A new theme, "Surprise", will be passed on to Denmark.