Friday, August 26, 2011

FAROE ISLANDS - 2010

My annual Gift to myself! 

Date of Issue: 26.04.2011

Europa 2010 - Children's Books

A good children’s book is not merely a children’s book, it is just as soon a book for everybody to enjoy, both to look at and to read. Each person gets somethingout of it, the adult as well as the young reader. There must be room for all age groups. The same goes for all true works of art – they are timeless and not confined within certain limits, neither time- nor age group-limits. If the work is of good quality, everybody ought to be able to enjoy it.
 
It is good to broaden your mind by reading about foreign countries and strange worlds. But there can be no doubt about the fact that at the same time it is of vital importance that all nations have their own books with narratives that will resound in each individual. We must be well acquainted with our own if we are to be able to soundly get the most out of all that comes from the outside. We will loose our foothold if we do not have a foothold of our own to stand on. Therefore it is good that even the smallest nations create their own works of art, that they write their own literature.
 
In the Faroes the teacher Hans Andrias Djurhuus (1883-1951) was the first to write poems, fairy-tales and stories for children. The animals that the children knew from their everyday life started talking, and their different characters were revealed through their deeds. Simple up-to-the minute accounts from the first half of the twentieth century are still as clear as if they have been preserved on photographic glass plates, only they are even more vivid as they emerge out of his naive texts. Still his songs are sung and his stories are read with great pleasure in kindergartens as well as in schools and homes. The amusing, sometimes sinister pictures that William Heinesen (1900-1991) drew to the numerous schoolbooks have certainly also become part of our children’s literature.
 
Somewhat later Sofía Petersen (1884-1960) collected nursery rhymes and fairy-tales which were published in 1947 in the book ”At Nightfall”. The artist Elinborg Lützen (1919-1995) ornamented the work with homely, enthralling pictures both in black and white and in colour. Here we have the outfield with all its animals and plants, and here is the same witch that children in many other countries know too, only this one is clad in Faroese everyday clothes, she lives in a Faroese turf shed of a house and has all the old Faroese domestic utensils which we now see at the museum.
 
Two more recent Faroese children’s books ”A dog, a cat and a mouse” and ”Moss Mollis’ journey” are shown on this issue of new Faroese stamps.
 
In 2004 the book ”A dog, a cat and a mouse” was published which Bárður Oskarsson (born 1972) both wrote and illustrated. The entire story takes place in a house that could be anywhere in the world. All the illustrations are in tawny water colours on which has been drawn with pencil and black ink. This is a classic dog’s-, cat’s- and mouse-story. No wonder that some of the salient characteristics of the modern comic strip-literature has stolen its way into the picture book. The impact from international inspiration is at work.
 
In 2008 came the book ”Moss Mollis’ journey”. In a short introduction Janus á Húsagarði (born 1975) says the story is about one of the small trolls in the Faroes that can stand the sun, a fact which enables it to travel around the islands at will. In richly water-coloured pictures the small troll Moss Mollis travels around the islands like another Niels Holgarsson, Selma Lagerlöf’s Swedish boy, though not sitting on the back of a goose. The journey commences at the bottom of the ocean where Moss Mollis picks up a pearl from an open horse mussel. With this pearl it travels across the country on the back of a gannet, of a horse, of a whale, of a crow and of a ram until it finds its darling troll who gets the pearl and who sits at his side in the moonlight watching the sea.

1 comment:

Yummy Mama said...

Oh, you have wonderful collection of the Children Books stamps.. :)

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