A Line-up of Experts

This trip was enhanced immensely by the addition of local expertise. The University of Minnesota Duluth thanks all of our hosts to adding an essential element to this special study of Nordic art and design.


Lixuan An, of Galleri Plan B in Växjö  gave us a tour if her fantastic, eclectic small gallery and an peek inside the business world of an art business.

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Monica Sandberg, Växjö-Duluth sister city coordinator, (right photo) welcomed us to  Växjö in high style. she arranged the Plan B Gallerei visit and a fabulous meal at Izakaya Moshi! restaurant.

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Stephanie Carleklev, Linnaeus University, Department of Design, Växjö gave a fist-class tour of the design facility.

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Special thanks to Margareta Wallin-Wictorin (center, red plaid), who organized an amazing visit to the Växjö and Kalmar campuses of  Linnaeus University and a trip to Öland an island in the Baltic Sea.  Here’s the faculty: (l-r) Ann Olbergs-Croall, Magnus Tornqvist, Cheryl Reitan (UMD), Margareta Wallin-Wictorin, Eva Cronquist, Lena Richert (our fabulous Öland tour guide) and Alison Aune (UMD professor).

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Anna Rosenquist, IKEA training manager, and Sarah Fager, IKEA designer, gave us the best behind the scenes look at how a retailing powerhouse thinks and works. Thank you! Thank you!

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UMD alumnus David (right photo) and his Swedish bride Inga-Lil Newkumet hosted us for a traditional Swedish meatball dinner. Before the meal, David’s Växjö Katedralskola singing group performed for us. What a fabulous night! Thank you for showing us that Swedish hospitality.


Filippa de Vos, director of Växjö Konsthall gave us a presentation on their newest exhibition:  Two Veins – Iraq and Sweden.

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We treasured the day at Annika o Sonntag’s Ceramic Workshop in Kosebo. Here is Cheryl Reitan (UMD), Annika, painter Francisco da Costa Maya, and Alison Aune (UMD).

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Many thanks to Thory Strandh, in Stockholm’s Gamla Stan, who shared her personal story about life and art and explained Viking and Sami imagery.


Wow, Thielska Galleriet, Stockholm, Sweden is quite a place! Wow, Patrik Steorn, Thielska Galleriet director is an amazing guide! Thanks Patrik, for sharing the great stories about Carl Larson, Edvard Munch, Eugène Jansson, and Ernest Thiel.


Thanks to Camilla Carlberg, Curator and Head of Learning, for introducing us to  Moderna Museet, Thanks to Moderna Museet for introducing us to Robert Rauschenberg’s “Monogram.”

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We met with Jerk Malmsten at the Malmstenbutiken and he talked about the store and shared stories about his grandfather, Carl Malmsten, Sweden’s foremost furniture designer of all time.

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Johan Björnsrud and Pompe Hedengren (right photo, top right) from Stockholm Graphics gave us a crash course in advanced graphic design. We were impressed, overwhelmed, and thankful for all the time they gave our group.

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Sindre Veseth Foss and Ulrik Solum Waagsether (above left), of the Oslo advertising agency Ernö, were delightful. We saw some of their intense video work and got to meet their office dog.

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Karie-Anne Pedersen, curator of the Norsk Folkemuseum, gave us a prize-winning tour of Norway’s folk treasures, from rosemaling to traditional Norwegian clothing. She had to break with us to meet with a family who were at the museum to donate an heirloom wedding dress, and finally an important reporter took her away, but in the meantime, we enjoyed the depth and breadth of her incredible knowledge.


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Ph.D. candidate Signe Marie Endresen showed us Edvard Munch’s 11 monumental paintings in the University of Oslo Aula, including “The Sun” which is the central motif on the back wall.  Ulla Uberg, curator of the university art collection joined us and offered insights on the history of the work. We can’t thank these two wonderful women enough for meeting us on the last day of our journey and capping off the trip with this rare viewing. Above left, Ulla Uberg, Signe Marie Endresen, Cheryl and Alison.


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