Tag Archives: Aston Feanley Museum

Norway, Oslo and Sandefjord

Spent a couple of days in Norway on the cruise. First stop was Oslo which I visited with Emma a few years ago and where the lovely Anne showed us all the sites. We docked in front of the impressive Opera House on the water – lovely day and night.

It looks like the weather over this cruise is going to be gray and wet and it was gray but not raining in Oslo so I decided to walk to the Contemporary Art Museum (the Aston Feanley Museum) in the Frogner area that Emma and I stayed at when we visited. It it is a funky part of town on the waterfront (as all bits of Oslo are) with cool hotels and apartments and dozens of eateries and some shops of course. In fact it is a cool 😎 city all round.

Oslo is always full of statues – mostly of nude women it would seem (?) although I liked the man sticking out of the side of the wall at the Museum.

The Aston Feanley was designed by Renzo Piano and like many places exhibiting this kind of art, the building is sometimes more attractive than the contents.

There was a large Damien Hirst collection (I am not a fan – the circular ones are his and resemble my old spirograph toy. I declined to add in the formaldehyde cow and calf but it is there) but I did quite like the abstracts by Olav Christopher Jenssen and the Jeff Koons’ gold lamé Michael Jackson and his monkey was a hoot.

Our second stop was the delightful town of Sandefjord – once the whaling capital of Norway and also a spa town where the wealthy when for treatments – especially rheumatoid arthritis. One of the treatments offered was listed as jelly fish (maybe a natural electric shock???).

The centre of town has a magnificent statue that shows the whalers on a time boat on the tip of a whale’s tail. It rotates fully very slowly every hours. And round the statue are carvings of the whaling process.

The old lady was a well known character who fished locally every morning to earn a living and she seems to have been much loved. The children’s statue is for Norway’s National Day – this is a country that only celebrates its national day with a kids parade and flags and music. No tanks, marching or military. What a civilised place this is.

We then popped into the local fish market – which had an array of pickled herring – which I love – to gravad lax and all sorts of fish which I didn’t recognise – the spotted one is a wolf fish.

The old town of Sandefjord has perfectly restored houses which are so well kept and loved. Even in the rain they looked so cute.

Back in 2015 there was a large street art festival here with artists from all over the world – here I some of the work that still remains.

As usual – Norway is a big hit with me.