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“The old man and the sea” is one of the key pieces in this art collection called Hard(cover-ed)narratives. Here is the reason why:


A little background: My father passed away a couple of decades ago, bless his memory. Several years later, I was very fortunate to uncover a cardboard box full of his handwritten short stories and poetry, some legible, others too hastily written to catch the content yet knowing that the word here had perhaps come out of a moment of revelation. 


This collection would take me on a long journey of visualizing what life would have been like as a youth in the 1930s, by the North Sea of southern Norway, diving into the violent undercurrents of the ocean for manhood's sake, driving one of the coolest motorcycles on the coastline, leather helmet, rucksack and dark exotic eyes to go with it, I am sure Clark Gable in mind, and longing for his absent father who at the time worked in Brooklyn and spent his nights on Hamilton street and wired money to a single parent, his wife, with 4 unruly boys on the shores of the Norwegian sea. 
This is partly the image I had growing up a few miles from that same ocean. This is also how “The old man and the Sea” has come to symbolize a memory of personal past, of growing up with old things and finding a place for them in a new world where old has to become more than marginal and where the wisdom of it has to find a place. 


Over time, the old things, even hard covered books, have come to mean not only a visual collection of images, of my traveling, while defining my once twice and third experience as an immigrant - in Israel, Canada and the US.


In a way, with the same curiosity that led me to search for clues into my father's past, also led me into other journeys of my past, my visual memory, be it impressions from Prado Museum and the classical western tradition, or the days of youth on Hillel street in Jerusalem, surrounded by desert or simply finding a way to express consciously or not the undercurrents of the aesthetic soul. 


There is of course a natural alignment between the visual and the intellectual journey. I consider myself fortunate to be able to – in the pursuit of meaning - bridge the old and the new.
The old, the past, the broken ties, the disconnect, with the modern and yet being part of a new, young and foreign nation, intensified this need of rewriting a narrative of identity.  


Hard(cover-ed) narratives is a collection of books, which can no longer be read, except for the collages of images that has now become the front cover. These may or may not reflect the content of the book, but are all images that were part of my heritage as well as of my aesthetic evolution.

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Catarina Kaptein Peder Carlsen.jpg

Catarina Kaptein Peder Carlsen

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