August 24th, 2010


More confusion

It took a few days to find the time, but on Thursday afternoon a friend and I went to Bølgen & Moi again to get a better look at Magne's art. The staff was busy preparing for dinner service, folding napkins carefully and setting up the cutlery in a cross-hatch pattern on the tables, arranging the glassware in rows of three at an angle, leaving room for the plates once dinner was ordered. The atmosphere there is elegant and modern, yet warm and comfortable. I love the exposed lightbulbs hanging from green cords - in the evening it looks a bit like stars are hanging over your table. Or perhaps that was an effect of the wine ;-)

As before, once the staff saw that we were interested in the artwork, they were very friendly and seemed proud of it. Despite how busy they were, someone came over to tell us how to read the text arrangement from Alpha Beta across the back wall, someone else later asked us if we knew who the artist was. "He is very famous in Norway." When I asked where the previous art went, they told me (as I suspected) that it had been sold. I could easily see how people visting that place would become attached to the artwork as well, the art and the space complement each other so well.

Thanks to the staff we felt very comfortable there, able to spend time to really look at the prints and arrangement. I had been worried we would be in the way or that people there would think we were strange for wanting to spend time looking at the art - it is not a gallery after all. However not only are they proud of the art but it is clearly a draw for customers, so I guess it makes sense that they would welcome people no matter what brings them in. My friend and I took some pictures, I'll put them behind the cut so I can use larger size images.

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The text arrangement reads: "Looking for things you will not find and ignoring the things you see".

Oh and I was wrong before thinking the frames were silver, it was hard to see properly from where I was standing on that first visit. It looks like the frames may be pine or some other light wood.

After looking at the art, we sat outside and had a drink. If I hadn't been meeting someone for dinner across town, I would have suggested staying so we could try something else on the menu - the chicken caesar salad we had on Monday night was so good. I will definitely visit there again when I return to Oslo.

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Last night as I was catching up on emails and media updates from the a-ha concert and promotion last week, I stumbled on this video interview with Magne and one of the guys from the Shining (the band that opened for a-ha and won a talent grant from them earlier this year). The piece was recorded in large part at Bølgen & Moi, so it's possible to get a much better impression of how the art contributes to the atmosphere than my pictures can give.