• Archive for December, 2009

    Christmas in Iceland

    December 26, 2009 // No Comments »

    We have never had so much fun at Christmas. Having David and Rejao along with us is great fun and their reflections on all the strange things create comic moments for us all.

    We came only two days before Christmas and had to prepare, finish to buy gifts and wrap them and then buy all the food that is very ‘neccecary’ to eat.

    On the 22nd and 23rd of December the shops are always open until late at night. The city is alive and the cafe’s and bars are full of people. We visited the new bar Karamba (the former 22), with a nice interior decorated by various illustrators, one of them the witty Hugleikur Dagson. Maybe Rejao will get a wall to decorate there when we return from Norway.

    Then we, of course, visited Kaffibarinn which David and Rejão have come to love and has become their favorite haunt along with Karamba. Kaffibarinn has been running in Reykjavik for 15 years and is always popular. You don’t go there for the best coffiee like the name might suggest, but for the athmosphere, it is always nice and relaxed. When I was in the art school I sat there many days a week with the computer drinking coffiee and smoking (in the good old days when I smoked and it was allowed inside!)

    We went to the Christmas pop-up shop in Hressó, where young designers and creatives had gathered with their products. There, Rejão was invited to play on the 23rd, which he of course loved to do and Andri came and played his guitar with him. At six o’clock we went to the annual walk for peace. The wether was beautiful and the main street crowded with people.

    On Christmas Eve we were invited to my father’s house for the formal dinner along with my brother who made a fantastic meal. Normally, Christmas Eve in Iceland begins formally at six o’clock, and some families go to church but that tradition has never been in my family. So, normally we just turn on the radio and ‘listen’ to the mass and have the Christmas dinner between 18-19.

    David, my brother, made a seafood soup for starters and a roasted smoked pork loin for main course. With the pork he made sugarbrowned potatoes, green beans, red cabbage, sause and then we had Laufabrauð (Leafbread), an indispenseble part of the traditional Icelandic Christmas dinner. It is common that families gather before Christmas to make this bread. They cut all kinds of patterns in the bread and demonstrate their artistic touch.

    After dinner we sat in the living room and began to open presents. The tradition in my parents house was to distribute the presents and then everyone open their own. Now we tried to begin with the tradition I have had with Andri and Dori, that one person selects a present for another (you cannot select your own) and the others follow what is inside. This of course is time consuming and after a while my father and brother lost their patience and father took upon himself to throw the gifts at each person! One present did not have a label on and he wanted to throw it out of the window since it wasn’t dedicated to anyone. We managed to stop that!


    Posted in Study trip to Iceland and Norway


    December 21, 2009 // No Comments »

    1. Waiting for the plane. 2. Our plane a new Airbus 330 (my son is an airplane nerd so I had to brag!). 3. Rejão watching all the movies. 4. The last Preta! (a Mozambican beer, the best of all) 5. Walking from the airport. 6. Looking for design books in Portuguese. 7. A taste of warm wine in cold Lisbon. 8. House roofs and a guard in Lisbon. 9. In the cozy Traveller's house.

    Our trip from Maputo went well. We had to travel separately because different return tickets to Iceland so I went with Rejão and David on the 19th and Dori and Andri travelled the day after. We all met up in London on the 21st for the last leg to Iceland.

    Our first flight was from Maputo to Lisbon. Our flight was at midnight so we could sleep on the way. Although it was tempting to watch all the nice films and shows in the ‘seat-tv’ in front of every seat. We landed between 10 and 11 in Lisbon and had made plans to meet Barbara and Pedro, a great couple that we got to know in Maputo last spring when they had a workshop in ENAV. She is a graphic designer and he works in theater. We received a great guided tour around Lissabon on a cold and a rainy day and then of course had a delicious baccalhau in the evening in a traditional Portuguese restaurant.

    We slept in a youth hostel called Travellers house (to be reccommended) very cheap and really nice. We even met a young cool Norwegian guy working there.

    Reunited in London. The pics below show what people were doing while waiting. Some were interested in playing computers and others focused more on the girls around.

    Our flight to London was the morning after and we were happily reunited with Dori and Andri in Terminal One in Heatrow around lunchtime. The flight to Iceland did not leave until nine in the evening so we had a day of waiting. But the time passed with a help of internet, computers, and some girls for Rejão and a PSP (portable playstation for those of you that don’t know!).

    We arrived in Keflavik at midnight the 21st in chilly Iceland. Andri’s father came to pick him up. Father and son were exited and happy to meet after 4 months of separation. Sverrir, Dori’s brother came for us the others and drove us downtown where we have borrowed a cozy little apartment. It has been great to be downtown with everything in a walking distance.


    Posted in Study trip to Iceland and Norway

    Study trip to Bilene

    December 19, 2009 // No Comments »


    My class that I have been teaching this year is finishing their last year in school. Next year they will work outside the school in graphic studios in Maputo and beside that do their final project. They will come in to school once a week and I will work with them to prepare and develope their final project. The students are motivated to work and I hope for a challenging and interesting period with them.

    I am used to school trips through the school years and have great memories from such trips. This class had never had a trip together. After 5 years together I thought it would be great if we could do that. It is important to create good memories from the school years.

    I decided to get a permission to go for a study trip focusing on their final project. It is good for the students to begin to think about their final project before the holidays so they can use that time to collect material and develope their ideas.

    I got permission to go and we went to Bilene; the class with 14 students and professor Candido, me and Xadreque (the financial director).

    We were unlucky with the weather in the beginning. It was raining on friday when we left and also on saturday until around five o’clock. Mozambicans really dislike rain and it was hard to get them in the mood to work. But we managed to get some work done. The students presented their ideas for the final project and most of them already had their idea ready. The ideas were various. Some were basic graphic design projects like doing an identity and advertisement campaign for a cream, perfume, watch and a bank. Other were socially oriented; one student wants to work on racism and another one (a graffiti artist) wants to focus on public art/street art and its image. Here like probably everywhere, graffiti is looked upon not as an art and expression but sabotage and the artists do not have a space to create their work. He wants to change that. It will be interesting to see the results.

    When the rain stopped we decided to have a bomfire on the beach. We had to drive around to find the firewood but we found ladies selling nice wood. It was beautiful, stary sky, guitarplay and barbequed chicken. After we made a short visit to a little discoteque in a nice ‘barraca’ area.

    On sunday the weather was beautiful. Sun and warm. Some of the group went with a boat over the lake to the other side. Then we played and enjoyed life on the beach and it was difficult to decide to go home.

    We had great time and created nice memories. I will really miss having this class around me every day, a great bunch! Thanks for a great trip all of you!!


    Posted in Soley work in ENAV

    A study trip to Iceland and Norway

    // No Comments »


    Two of my students Rejão and David will come with us tomorrow to Iceland for five weeks over the christmas. They will go for a study trip and the task is to make documentary work; film and animation about environmental issues. Rejão is a talented illustrator and a growing animator and Davids talents lie within film, collage and conceptual work. We are hoping that they will make a good team with these different talents and the collaboration will bring out something interesting. They have already started to collect material here in Maputo and have made a short video art-work that they like to present there north. They have been focusing on garbage and pollution. These students are talented and work hard.

    The project is supported by the FK program I am in on behalf of Kulturskolen i Fredrikstad and ENAV, the school I work in. The Iceland Academy of the Arts supports the project by offering facilities and teachers.

    Here is the description of the project and below is a pdf documents with the project description in english and portuguese to download:

    Today it has become an undisputed fact that the whole world has to deal with a large environmental problem. Global warming is on the increase and an endless production of things can not be sustained. To turn to a more sustainable lifestyle it is necessary to be creative in communicating the problem and designing new ways of living. Designers and artist have the skills to motivate and open peoples eyes in a creative and effective way. Their work is to design our daily things and select materials and sources. An essential part of the environmental impact that products generate, is decided on the design stage.
    This project is inspired by the work the students of ENAV did in relation to the World Wide Views on Global Warming meeting that took place in Maputo. The Students worked for one week creating an exhibition about global warming in front of the hall where the meeting took place. The weeks before the students were given lectures about global warming and shown films to gain a better understanding about the subject matter.
    The students became very inspired and interested in continuing to work with environmental issues. A group of students called Bantuart is now finishing a project description of a street performance they want to make about global warming. Other students have also presented some ideas.
    Hopefully it is possible to establish an interdisciplinary environmental group in the school where students in design, art, ceramics and textiles will work through the year on different projects addressing environmental issues. There are many things to address and opportunities to participate in national and international events dedicated to the environment.

    The project
    The studytrip is meant to be an inspiration to the students in ENAV. Two students will travel to Iceland and Norway for one month. These students have a growing and promising competence in film, illustration and animation and therefore the ability to communicate their experiences in a creative way.
    The students will visit places that are related to environmental issues, for example recycling and waste management. They will meet designers that work in a sustainable way and have workshops with professional people within design, film and art to train and improve their competence.
    During the month before the trip the students will work on research in Maputo. They will record and collect visual material to take along and work with while on the trip in the medialabs provided.

    Objectives and goals
    Increasing the competence of the students that will travel.

    Produce material that can be valuable for the Mozambican society.
    To inspire the students of ENAV to address environmental issues in a creative way.
    Transfer of knowledge and know-how in tackling environmental challenges.

    A film/animation from the material collected in the trip.

    A presentation of the trip and their experiences.
    Other material will depend on the ideas that will come up during the process.

    MONOZI (An FK supported program):

    Kulturskolen i Fredrikstad
    Escola Nacional de Artes Visuais

    Teachers, DogS:
    Soley Stefansdottir. Working as an FK participant in Maputo
    Halldor Gislason. Developing a cooperation between ISAC; the new Art and Design Academy in Mozambique and KHiO; Oslo National Academy of the Arts
    Iceland Academy of the Arts (Provides facilities and teachers)

    David Pinto Calvo Aguacheiro, graphic design student in ENAV
    Rejao David de Carvalho, graphic design student in ENAV

    Project description
    descrição do projecto


    Posted in Soley work in ENAV, Study trip to Iceland and Norway

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