Tourist

Today was the last day of an Easter break that has consisted of brilliant sun and bitterly cold temperatures. My son and I went in to Oslo to test out his new camera on a “photo safari.” We had a fun time kicking around the center of town, which is a haven for literary pilgrims. While my son was photographing tagging and garbage, I hit some of the devotional “stations.” First, the big Henrik Wergeland statue, where students at Oslo Cathedral School still give speeches and lay down wreaths each May 17th:

wergeland_statue

Then the “Grotto,” Wergeland’s home in the park of the royal palace (now occupied by Jon Fosse):

grotten

And of course the iconic snapshot of Stephan Sinding’s Ibsen statue in front of the National Theater:

ibsen_theater

My son really liked the Bjørson statue because he (and Wergeland too) look like superheroes with their big capes. How appropriate, given the De fire store comic books. Maybe they’ll come out with a new one starring Wergeland?

We also checked out Ingrid Falk and Gustavo Aguerre’s (FA+) “Quotation Street Ibsen” project along Karl Johan street. I had fun looking at the words in the context of the spring thaw, especially how “herregud” (“O Lord” in Ibsen’s vernacular, but also “OMG” today) looked as it came out from under ice and gravel:

herregud
I went hoping to get pictures of words and people’s feet, but my son had a much better take on the project; he photographed a bunch of individual words so that he could construct his own sentences out of them by mixing them up later. It’s a really interesting public art piece, actually, and according to Wikipedia (Source of All Knowledge) the second largest sculptural installation in Oslo after the Vigeland Park. It even has its own font.

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