marshtide: (Lake)
1. Patched my favourite jeans. They're super-comfy but have slowly been turning into one big hole.


Of course I had to be all pseudo-artistic about it, because I am me! I may not be done with sewing random shit to these jeans. If they're going to be patched they should be really patched, damn it.

2. Been to Moderna Museet (the Museum of Modern Art) in Stockholm to see exhibitions of the work of Siri Derkert and Klara Lidén. Art sure does take a lot of mental energy. I really enjoyed myself.

And now I am tired.

I took a pile of photographs, from both the museum building at large and from the actual exhibitions. Here are the ones that don't feature people who wouldn't want to show up here.

Read more... )

3. Annoyed the cat.

Here is the cat, in J's schoolbag:

Read more... )

At first when the bag started shaking and screaming we wondered if he was stuck, but apparently it's just the Best Game Ever.
marshtide: (Too-ticki)
Another image-heavy post, I'm afraid! This became some kind of odd scrapbook business. & Tove Jansson is essentially one of our house-gods, so there was no chance I was ever going to keep this brief.

Written for [personal profile] ar's She's Kind of a Big Deal: Women Worth Knowing About!


She's Kind of a Big Deal: Tove Jansson
[Photo: a woman sits at a cluttered desk. She's holding a cigarette and looking at the camera.]

Who she was: Tove Jansson was born in Helsinki in 1914 to parents who were both artists. Her father was a Finland-Swedish sculptor (that is to say, a part of the Swedish-speaking minority in Finland) and her mother was a Swedish illustrator.

Read more... )

What she did: Tove was both an artist and a writer, although she's mostly remembered for her Moomin books, which are by this time cultural icons. They're often reported to be about little white trolls who have harmless adventures and are very sweet. This is questionable.

Read more... )

Ways to appreciate her:


Many of Tove Jansson's books are translated to English (and plenty of other languages). All of the Moomin story books are currently in print in the US and the UK, and the three picture books she did in the Moomin world are also in print in the UK, although possibly not the US.

A tiny publishing company called Sort Of Books is releasing her other books right now in the UK, and I gather a buch of them have been re-released in the US at the same time, though I'm not sure exactly which are available there. They've put out new editions of or translated for the first time:

The Summer Book (an old woman and her granddaughter spend a summer on an island together)
A Winter Book (a collection of short stories drawn from various different collections)
Fair Play (my favourite - a depiction of two women growing old together, living and working and travelling. a love story. kind of.)
The True Deceiver (a very tense, terrifying book, which takes place in a little village which is completely snowbound for the winter. A young woman who is seen by the village as an outsider moves into the home of an elderly artist on the edge of town. Full of deception and manipulation - but who is manipulating who?)
Travelling Light (Collection of short stories)

I'm kind of hoping that they'll pick out Sculptor's Daughter for release, which is one of her close-to-autobiographical books about her childhood. It has been published in English, but has been out of print for years; I did manage to find a copy in my local library when I lived in the UK, though!


To see her artwork you need to go to Finland, which isn't something I've managed yet myself! (Even though it's just across the water.) The Tampere Art Museum has a collection of her works.

Associated reading: English

There's very little available in English when it comes to academic texts about Tove Jansson's work, biography, or anything else really.

But here's the one that does exist:

Tove Jansson Rediscovered, edited by Kate McLoughlin and Malin Lindström Brock, published 2007 by Cambridge Scholars Publishing, is a collection of papers about many different aspects of Tove Jansson's life and work. The papers aren't of even quality, but many of them are brilliant. The essays cover disciplines from queer studies to art history and beyond.

Associated reading: Swedish

In Swedish there are, conversely, about a million books about Tove Jansson's life and work.

My personal favourites are the books by Boel Westin:

Tove Jansson: ord, bild, liv, published in 2007 by Schildts, is an extensive biography, well-written and full of great information and pictures.

Familjen i dalen: Tove Janssons muminvärld, published in 1988 by Bonnier, is an analysis of Tove's Mumin books.

Links: English

- A virtual gallery with information, art and photographs relating to Tove Jansson

- Information put together in connection with a Moomin 65th anniversary exhibition

- A collection of Tove Jansson's illustrations

[Image: A short-haired Tove Jansson looks off to one side of the photographer. She's holding her glasses, one arm of them against her mouth.]
marshtide: (Default)
I mean, he's eleven. For one thing, he's a good if eccentric artist, and for another, what the hell, eleven year olds are alowed to draw however the hell they want. So is everyone else, for that matter.

Here's the thing: for years I've only drawn anything very occasionally because I've never thought I was very good at it. And I'm probably not. I tend to stall a lot at writing for the same reason, though I can write pretty well - but I am, you know, not a genius, so do I really have the right? Liv Strömqvist has done a comic about this phenomenon, and I'll scan and translate it some time soon, I think.

Her point is basically: fuck that. Do you like doing it? OK! Do it! Unapologetically!

And maybe that's how you get good at it, and maybe you will never be good at it, but if you do it with confidence because you enjoy it then who cares.

This really should be obvious but it's something I've had a lot of trouble with. It's something most of us have trouble with.

Excuse me. I have a malformed crocodile or something to draw.
marshtide: (Too-ticki)


1. Tony Porter talks about how fucked up current ideas of masculinity are. (Discussion of rape and violence against women.)


(NSFW alltihop. Reklamen på Bangs hemsida är alltid något... du vet.)

2. En idealisk gärningsman av Niklas Hellgren (våldtäkt, ras, föredomar)

3. Konst som splittrar nationen av Tiina Rosenberg (SD, främlingsfientlighet och konst som nånting som bör vara skönt och ge glädje - eller bör provocera)

4. De osynliga systrarna av Susan Behnam (gammal artikel om invandrarkvinnor och kvinnorörelsen)

Jag blir lite kär i Bang ibland. Har ni favorit tidskrifter på svenska som jag kanske skulle tycka om...?

I feel unsure about how to describe my interview experience. It felt positive; but on the other hand, I've had such overwhelmingly negative experiences of interviews before that I can't say if that's a skewed perspective talking. It could just mean "I didn't even panic a little bit."

The really positive thing here, I think, is that I know now that I'm capable of doing an interview without hyperventilating, which has been a traditional problem and a barrier to gainful employment. What's more, I can do it in Swedish - and regardless of outcome they were really impressed with my language skills and said so several times. (Sometimes I do feel like Swedish has been a key to a bunch of things for me, particularly expressing myself with confidence, which maybe sounds weird considering I'm not actually capable of such complex expression as I am in English. I'm sure it's also coincidence in that my mental health has improved a lot over the last year, but the end result is that I can now do things in Swedish that I couldn't have done in English last year.)

I never did talk about my exam much, did I? The key points are:

1. I got to write a short comic piece on the topic of LGBT parenting (there were a few themes to pick from, one of which was children and childhood, so I ran with it). I got very high marks.

2. My spoken test was on the subject of gender equality. ...I got very high marks.

I detect the hand of D in the latter. He's the younger of my two teachers, and delights in provocative topics, and is very good at asking the questions that people try to avoid. He's thoughtful and precise in his expression of ideas and I suspect that a day when he gets to challenge people's preconceptions is, for him, an excellent day. Yes, we got on rather well.
marshtide: (Default)
One day I will have:

1. A really badass poster or print of Patti Smith, preferably from Horses
2. Prints of some of Tove Jansson's paintings
3. Prints of this and this
4. Photos of: Tove Jansson (possibly with Tuulikki Pietilä, who knows), Virginia Woolf, Victoria Benedictsson, And Possibly Others

...which is probably obscenely eclectic as a set of Stuff and matches exactly one other person's taste in appropriate wall decorations. It really is lucky that I live with that person. (I should add that none of this stuff has presented itself to us in any kind of buyable form yet, either, quite above the fact that we should be spending money on other things.)

But for now we have to actually buy some frames for the backlog of art and photos that we haven't put on the walls, despite having said every month or so for the last half year that we'll get frames for them. Soon.
marshtide: (Default)
Val's mum lent us a book on female Nordic painters (because we need more books) following our burst of enthusiasm for the topic last weekend. Therefore, picture of the day:

Vid Thebordet, Elin Danielson-Gambogi, 1890

Which I think is seriously pretty great & would put a print of on my wall if I could find one.
marshtide: (Default)
1. Today I had my first morning with SFI. It went well. What else to say? A basic sort of beginning & all stuff I already knew, but this is the introductory month.

2. At the weekend [personal profile] valborg and I went with family to the National Museum in Stockholm, theoretically to look at an exhibition of paintings by Rubens & Van Dyck. We wandered off quite fast, in a combination of not being that impressed with Rubens generally and also everyone in the museum trying to stand in the same room. Poking around in a slightly aimless way, we came across one painting that we both really liked, which was a portrait of Jeanna Bauck, a Swedish artist, by Bertha Wegmann, a Danish one. The portrait seemed really expressive, somehow. I can't find much about either of them, but I'm really interested now. I guess that's yet another quest - as if I didn't have enough already!

The artist Jeanna Bauck, painted by Bertha Wegmann in 1881

(Will remain mildly irritated at the museum for a while for having postcards/posters/prints of almost every painting in the area we found that one in except for that one itself.)

3. Virginia Woolf's diary! She really is an alarming woman. Of course I don't think that's a bad thing, although she does hold some unfortunate views sometimes too - but what is one to do? Admit they're unfortunate and move on (it's not as though one didn't know about them at the outset). She has an awful lot to say that I feel quite comfortable with too though & we are at present at the tail end of 1917 so expecting an outlook fully suited to modern sensibilities would be quite unfair.

I'm just emerging from a section of diary through the late summer & early autumn of that year in which she mostly talks about nature, in a way which makes one almost suspicious as to what else is going on in there - but it's the way I might record thoughts if things were going either very well so I didn't have much to complain about or very badly so I didn't want to think about it, so it could mean anything.

4. Where do all the library books come from? One would think I lived with a librarian or something. Goodness.


marshtide: (Default)

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