RU  UK  EN
Articles  >  Imagine  >  Made In Sweden: Dalecarlian Horse

Made In Sweden: Dalecarlian Horse

Author: 04.12.2017 | Sweeden
And since winged horses of Valkyries darted away to Valhalla forever, Dalecarlian horse has remained the guardian of Vikings’ traditions – painted folk toy, first mentioned in chronicles of 17th century. Dalecarlian horse serves as an amulet of non-touristic Sweden by saving from oblivion ancient fables and beliefs.

. In Scandinavian mythology horse is bound tightly with deities of solar pantheon: in days of solstice Swedes and Sami tribes would sacrifice stallions with white, sorrel and palomino coats, begging sun gods for rich harvest and not very hungry winter. It later turned out that the luminary wouldn’t go dark, should a symbolic picture of a horse instead of a soigné stud be committed to flames.

With time carving of wooden horses lost its sacred meaning and turned into an amusement for peasantry. Upon hitting a daily target in number of chairs and tables, village craftsmen carved toy horses for kids out of offcuts of wood thus expressing belated gratitude to peasant’s toiler- horses. However, in household use animals were treated without mittens: what if they get spoiled!

Фото 89.108.107.212:9998/images/sight/content/oqoofqjn10.jpg

Church never approved of practices that reminded pagan past. First mention of favorite Swedish toy featured a wrathful speech of bishop Rodbekio aimed against “diabolic tool”. Craft prospered only in a distant northern province Dalarna that used to be called Dalecarlia: remote villages lost among forests lived in compliance with their own laws, luckily avoiding both secular and clerical authorities.

At first horses weren’t painted or even colored, but there are few things one wouldn’t do to attract buyers: merchants form southern provinces traded toy horses for food and clothes. In 19th century toys started being decorated with kurbits – floral ornamentation eagerly sought in church paining. According to a biblical legend, Jonah the prophet saved himself from ungodly citizens of Nineveh under a kurbit bush that had grown at God’s dictation merely over a night.

Фото shabby-decor.ru

Over recent two hundred years domestic production of Dalecarlian horses hasn’t undergone almost any changes. Majority of souvenirs is produced at homes by family contracts: husbands carve, face and polishe intermediaries while wives cover them with decorative painting. Grannas A Olssons Handicraft Art Workshop is considered to be the largest manufacturer of this Swedish folk toy, it is located in forest village called Nusnäs in suburbs of Mora: annually about a hundred thousand horses comes off its workbenches.

Фото upload.wikimedia.org

Automatization only impacted crudest stages of production process. Machines are applied solely to cut dummies out of northern poplar bars while precise fitting, sanding and polishing are performed exclusively manually. Later background primer and protective lacquer are applied to items for them to be left to dry and passed on under control of painters in two-three days. Ornamentation never repeats itself because use of stencils and clichés isn’t technologically provided for. On request a tourist can paint one of intermediaries with own hands to become an owner of an exclusive souvenir.

Фото visitcarolina.files.wordpress.com

To experts such craft centers as Sjöberg, Färnäs and Norra-Lindberg sound familiar. Samples of various styles are presented in Dalecarlian Horse Museum at Dala-Järna, founded at the initiative of Tomas and Margot Holst; at that the man of the family became famous as a skillful craftsman who carved the world’s smallest horse. By the way, the largest wooden horse 13 meters high resides in Dalarna, too – it greets tourists entering Avesta.

Origins of a toy can be easily spotted by nature of the pattern. Painting in the manner of Nusnäs settlement is considered canonic: flame-horse of orange-red coat in a festive horsecloth strewn with large blue-and-white flowers and openwork emerald-colored leaves ardently shakes finely-painted mane ready to break into a gallop to compete with the wind. In Leksand they prefer goldish-yellow background, in Mora they opt for indigo colors while in Norrbärke carved horses are customary decorated with black-and-burgundy garlands. At souvenir shops of Lappish town Svatnes one can come across horses with black coat adorned with white-and-blue and blue-and-yellow patterns that symbolize friendship of Finland and Sweden. In early 18th century author’s works of Leif Chilstrem, tinted with ochre, enjoyed popularity – mimicking his idol Karl Larsson, carver drew inspiration in interiors of the painter’s villa.

Фото 4.bp.blogspot.com

Modern designers actively experiment with ornamentation and coloring of a folk toy. Bertil Vallien Crafts Centre slightly refreshed traditional design of a horse from Söderbärke by letting snowflakes dance in rounds along yellow bodies. Anita Arvidsson-Åkerblom from Avesta elaborated two models with white grounding: Vattneshäst with red geometric pattern and Bronibeks with a blue mane and a toy saddle. Maud Ap and Agnetta Pavinen decorate their green horses with pictures of berries and a painter Karin Andersen from Bjoros, to the contrary, gets back to basics by leaving her “pets” non-colored for the sake of preserving wood texture. Many Swedes are fond of collecting Dalecarlian horses thus letting a fairy tale into everyday life. Bright herd on a shelf is so much different from seven porcelain elephants, loaded with guileless philistine luck.

Заглавное фото h24-original.s3.amazonaws.com

It will be interesting:
STEP OVER THRESHOLD: THE MAGICAL ART OF THE HUICHOL PEOPLE
Dazzling flashes of ancient knowledge manifested in colourful shimmering beads and in elaborated yarn mosaics by Huichol Indians, captivate the imagination calling for an endless journey through branches of the world tree. Spiritual images take on flesh in intricate ornaments that accompany a Mexican peasant throughout his life. Twilight land of legends always have a shelter for a weary traveller: no one is alone on the paths of spirits.
Departure: Yemen
Many scientists and historians unanimously agree that Middle East, particularly, Arabian semi-island is the cradle of human civilization because almost every nation among those present there is one of the most ancient on our planet. In this list there are citizens of Yemen who created the interesting in a travelling way country bounded by two seas and Indian Ocean simultaneously.
Sri Lankan Masks: Guides to the Kingdom of Spirits
Traditional carved mask is a desired souvenir for a tourist fascinated by distinctive bright tropical color of a wonderful island of Sri Lanka. Painted faces of monsters from fairy tales win hearts with liveliness and straightforwardness of emotions that our rational world so desperately lacks – and your hand surrenders to an impulse to reach for the wallet, owner of a shop is lavish in his praise of your taste… Congratulations: you’ve invited a demon into your house.
Divine mugham: the music of Azerbaijan
There is music which brings us back to life. It happens even if the tears are falling when one listens to it. The musical genre mugham talks to the audience using the right language. Everyone has lived out unhappy love, loss of a close person or ruin of ideals. These topics became the source of inspiration for the musicians of Azerbaijan movement mugham. OUTLOOK will tell about this unique style of music.
Ours Made the Grade: Anatoliy Kokush
Cinematography is probably the most "technological" art form that mankind has ever come up with – no matter how much talent, imagination and energy creators of a movie have, almost every stage of creation process one way or another comes to technologies; and without them ideas will remain just ideas. Today Outlook tells you about probably the most famous Ukrainian "technician" from the world of moviemaking – winner of as many as two aspired Oscars, Anatoliy Kokush.
Artaud theatre: life is imitation of art
The power of gestures burns the text to ashes, sound deafens and takes to the abyss from which all of us come and where we return upon the accomplishment of a short time period called as the life. Attending the Theatre of Cruelty, a human appears in the centre of performance as there are everything we are hiding from in the everyday routine, particularly, freedom and isolation, life on the border, merging with the crows till self is lost and lonely residing at the top. The drama of being involves in its mineral resources, the echo of tragedy overwhelms publics and spectator without noticing it appears in the trap of the own perception. That is about the so-called ‘Theatre of Cruelty’ (theatre de cruaute), the child of French playwright and director, eccentric and shocking Antonen Artaud.
Yonge Street: the story of some road
People who for the first time arrive in Toronto have every likelihood to face the local surprises. For example, you may be offered to reach your destination across Yonge Street. When you agree to have this affair, you will be asked once again: ‘Are you going to cross the whole street?' Being astonished you will try to look at the details only to find out that the length of this mysterious street is 1896 kilometers. Then, if you express a bit more curiosity and decide to read the history of the longest street in the world, the adventurous travel in the world in Indians, Europeans occupiers and encountering of the cultures are waiting for you. So, let’s start…
From Dusk till Dawn: TOP-5 Capitals of Europe’s Night Life
Each one has own notion of a perfect rest: some need ocean, beach and an exotic cocktail for a perfect relaxation; others are drawn to conquer new mountain peaks; some people live in anticipation of acquaintance of ancient ruins… But there are people who dream of cutting loose at full throttle, forgetting everything and anything else!
INCHEON: KOREAN CITY OF THE FUTURE
Incheon is considered to be sea and air gateway to South Korea since it has one of the country's largest seaports and the most spacious, world-class airport in the region. The city is growing rapidly: within just a hundred years it developed from a modest port settlement to an ultramodern industrial and tourist hub.
Fado: gentleness and deftness of Portuguese romances
Twelve-string guitar, the twilight of Portuguese nights, candles, and soul-gripping voice… Dramatic incentives of fado song tell about unrequited love. It cannot appear in the crossroads of destinies; however, it enables feelings to embody into the touching sounds of Portuguese romances.
Wonderful Chad. Ten facts about the country
Africa, the huge continent, for the majority of citizens of the Earth looks as one global region without special differences. Certainly, it is not like that! Today we share the most interesting facts about Republic Chad. Its existence is known for everybody though there 11 million people live while its territory is 20-th largest in the world.
WE WERE THERE: GUDAURI
In Gudauri it is easy to feel time, pinch it between your fingers and stretch it in space, tuning up your inner rhythm to a sensation mode. There are no deadlines, annoying neighbours and reckless guys driving out to oncoming traffic lane. All this hustle and bustle seem illusory and momentary. Here, in Gudauri values are different. The mountains do not tolerate fuss, inner dialogue and self-criticism. The greatest pleasure is just to contemplate at them.
History of a Brand: Cirque du Soleil
Spectacular show project Cirque du Soleil rocked the world of circus art to remind that circus can not only entertain but also create new reality. Crazy experiments on human body defy any power on gravity and miracle-plays of sound and light lure the audience into a twilight labyrinth of philosophical dramas letting them get to the sun together with characters of stagings.
On catwalk: Argentina
Every people has its folklore heroes that both children and adults want to look like. In Argentina legendary gaucho are considered ones and their outfits nowadays are believed to be traditional costumes of the country.
MUST-WATCH VIDEO: And some tea to Room 13, please!
This beverage became so deeply ingrained in the life of humans that we sometimes even fail to notice putting a kettle on a stove. There are thousands ways of best-loved beverage brewing in the world. OUTLOOK offers the best of them to your attention.
What they eat: Albania
Flavorous Çömlek, refreshing Tarator and warming Skanderbeg – what is it that we’re talking about? If Balkan countries are far from you and you didn’t spend your latest vacation by Adriatic Sea, today we’ll fill in the gaps and invite you to Albania but not for a simple tour but to the kitchen so if you manage to come back without extra kilograms, you can be safely awarded a self-mastery medal.
IF YOU HAVE 10 $ AND YOU ARE IN... STOCKHOLM
Stockholm is one of the most expensive cities in the world. Nevertheless, its residents are satisfied with this status of the capital, and it is no wonder since an average salary in the city reaches USD2800... So, at first glance, it is a difficult task to have a good fun in the Swedish capital if you have just USD10 in your pocket. But this task is not hopeless once you stir your imagination and wind up your brain. So, our adventurous readers, follow us and we will show how to penetrate into the soul of the city without spending bank notes with your both hands!
GOTHENBURG: CITY WITH SEA FRAGRANCE
It is often compared to San Francisco due to abundance of bridges, water, hills and fish restaurants catering for every taste and pocket. There, even usual tap water is real mineral water, the city is awash with luscious leafy green spaces inhabited by undisturbed rabbits and hares... It may seem that this is a fairy tale abode, but in fact this is city of Gothenburg located in Sweden.
Close
Outlook facebook page