All posts tagged: Norway

The last gasps of Norwegian rural life

At first glance the Bjelland siblings, Edvard and Bergit, are unremarkable. They grew up along four other siblings in Brusand, Jæren – a remote village on the south-west Norwegian coast, on a farm which dates back to the 1800s and has passed through their family for four generations. On the farm, horses, cows, pigs, hens and over one hundred sheep were kept. But for Norwegian photographer Elin Høyland, the Bjellands represent something of significance, and worth preserving. When Høyland first met Edvard, Bergit has recently died, the livestock had been sold off and the land was now rented out. He was now alone, save a handful of sheep he continued to look after. The rural existence that defined the land for centuries was now slowly vanishing from sight. This view was shared by Norwegian regional arts institute Hå Gamle Prestegård. They commissioned Høyland, who was shortlisted for the Photo Folio Review Award at this year’s Les Rencontres d’Arles, to visit the Bjelland homestead and create a record of the 200 year old farmhouse (a listed building) and this lifestyle …

2016-01-13T14:32:24+00:00

James Nachtwey – The Improviser

James Nachtwey stretches his arms across the sofa and pauses to think. He’s just declined to answer whether he ever has nightmares, and now he’s fielding a question that every war reporter has faced; has he ever truly feared for his life? He recalls covering the civil war in Sri Lanka. He was embedded with one of five rebel groups, but the Tamil Tigers, the main insurgent group, were taking out their opposition one by one. He was on an island off the Jaffna peninsula, hiding out. The position was being over-run, and the native New Yorker was completely isolated, unable to get out. He found a Catholic monastery, and hid. In a church in outer Sri Lanka, he found a copy of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, and he read it. He stayed there for three weeks, trying to focus on Shakespeare, until he found the chance to escape back to the mainland and to safety. “That was the first time I really thought I wasn’t going to make it,” Nachtwey says, his voice even. “Parts of my life I’d thought I’d …

2015-08-21T13:25:48+00:00

BJP Staff