Thursday, 25 August 2016

the boy that loved to draw

"kari - motiv fra sunde" (nikolai astrup)

back in 1918 the norwegian painter nikolai johannes astrup completed his painting named "kari (motiv fra sunde i jølster)", or "... ved jølstervandet", in english "kari (theme from sunde in jølster)" (more info here).

back in the 1980s a replica of this picture was put on a wall in an apartment, by a woman that lived there with her two daughters and her son. one day, this woman saw her young son looking up at the picture. she said: "i will tell you a secret. there are many faces hiding in this painting. there are faces among the stones, in the grass, in the mountains, all over the place. if you look carefully, you will find them. but if you don't take your time to study the picture, you will see nothing but the girl's face". the little boy was fascinated with the fact that a seemingly normal painting could have so many secrets. for many hours he would search for the hidden faces. and he found quite a few.

the little boy loved to draw himself. it was his most beloved activity. he did draw day after day. however, as he grew older he started comparing himself with other children that also liked to draw. when he saw how wonderful and realistic some of the kids' drawings were, he started to believe that he could not draw himself. so he stopped.

the little boy grew up, and became a man. more than 30 years passed since the boy was introduced to the painting with the hidden faces. he had forgotten all about his childhood passion, and had not made a single drawing since he was a little boy. however, one dark winter night something very special happened to this man. he dreamt that once again he was drawing. but it was not a normal drawing. the drawing became alive, as he drew. and the man could draw whatever he thought of. there were no limits to his skills, nor his ideas. and this dream felt so real, that when he woke up he actually thought he had been drawing instead of sleeping.

he could not forget his lively surreal dream. he remembered all the details. one day he decided to sit down, to recreate the drawing from his dream. a drawing that at first glimpse looked like nothing but a paper full of messy lines. however, that with a closer look revealed a lot of secrets. so for the first time, in almost 30 years, he made a new drawing. and he thought this was so fun, that he kept drawing. sheet after sheet was filled with lines. and as he did, his memories of the painting with the hidden faces came back to him. he realised that to hide secrets in his drawings was his style as well. because then his art would become fun. just like a game.

since that day the man has kept drawing. and one day, kids might be searching his drawings, trying to discover the secrets that hides in between the lines.

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