Gunilla Sköld Feiler
by Ida Rödén
During my interview with Gunilla Sköld Feiler the seamstress was ever-present. Gunilla Sköld Feiler paints quickly and intuitively with ink and watercolour on rice paper which is surprisingly sturdy. Then she cuts up the paintings and gathers the bits and pieces together almost like cloth. Tearing apart a complete image to smaller pieces and then combining these fragments into new constellations (some of them with gaps) might resemble memory-processing. Gunilla Sköld Feiler is not interested in creating pretty works. She has a preference for theatre props, costumes, and the opera scene. Her grandmother’s works as a seamstress has also been a great influence as well as her visit to Catacombe dei Cappuccini in Palermo where the dead are laid to rest fully-dressed in their finest clothes. For a period of 3 intense years she painted portraits. These are not portrayals of anyone in particular or even renditions from photos. It takes deep concentration and focus to bring out a character and a plausible portrait that is unsettling as well as touching just from one’s own imagination.
Anna Rún Tryggvadóttir
by Jón B K Ransu
Jackson Pollocks legacy is tied to countless artists that deal with the action and process of artmaking. Anna Rún Tryggvadóttir is an Icelandic artist based in Berlin and Reykjavik who uses the autonomous behaviour of watercolours and dripping technique in a very unconventional manner. This idea of interaction and unity of materials is a fundamental aspect in her art. She creates installations with technologically driven drip systems that manage doses of watercolour onto different kinds of material, causing interaction or unity. The transformation is in no way controlled by the artist nor does it necessarily have a predictable process. The artist creates the setting, then backs away to allow the action to happen by itself. The installations are therefore performative, or a kind of “happenings”, because they are ever changing. As such they not only reveal the act or action of applying paint to a surface, or watercolour on paper, but also put the process itself on view so we can follow the stages of it.
by Camilla Granbacka
Many of Senja Vellonen’s near-transparent paintings radiate a mysterious almost hidden world. They are figurative leaning towards abstraction, tender and gracious though painted in earth colours. Here one can find tranquility and peace of mind. She mostly paints outdoors where nature inspires her. Fire is a favourite subject matter which can be quite challenging. She also painted a series of lit candles for an exhibition in 2017. Senja Vellonen in born and raised in Finland but has on many occasions visited and lived in France. She often works in series within a theme, still giving each work individuality. For a long period she only painted roses on very large formats, up to a width of 2 metres. In her art books she might use mixed media with watercolour but otherwise she paints exclusively in watercolour. Her paintings are all from observation and she might start outdoors and add the finishing touches in her studio. Painting the same subject matter over and over again is a way of reaching various interpretations.
Fritz Syberg (1862–1939)
by Marianne Gross
Anna Syberg was portrayed in issue 1-2014 and has since her death become a very popular artist, but in his lifetime, her husband Fritz Syberg was the most successful of the two. He experienced becoming the highest paid painter in Denmark. Fritz Syberg lived in poverty. His father died when the boy was 2 and his mother died in the poorhouse when he was a teenager. The death of his mother was traumatic and a key to understanding his life and art. During his apprenticeship as a house painter he worked on becoming an artist. Fritz Syberg had a happy marriage to Anna and was a doting father for their 7 children. He became the centre of a group of painters on the island of Funen – the members are now considered an established and respected part of the Danish art scene. He made use of watercolour in long periods of time, but also used ink, pencil, oil, etc. The watercolour works would be exhibited as art pieces in their own right and not just as sketches, as was often the case in those days. His wife and children were favourites objects but he also painted many landscapes in Denmark as well as in Italy.
Presentation of our writers
by Håkan Bull – The first to present himself in this new series is our magazine editor, Håkan Bull:
My road to NAS – the Nordic Watercolour Society started in 2007 when the editor at the time, Jacqueline Stare, interviewed me for an article in the magazine akvarellen. In 2012 I was elected to join the board of NAS and also started to write for the magazine. After being the editor for 10 years, Jacqueline Stare decided to retire in 2013. I took over the job of editor as of issue no 1-2014 and stepped down from the NAS board at the same time. Even though I have a degree in art history, I have not always been a writer of art but more a curious artist working as an art teacher, an art consultant, a curator and an elected representative for various artist associations. However, in all these various roles writing educational or poetic texts concerning art have been an important part of the task. I find writing about my own art essential to my work and I have always enjoyed giving titles to my works.