Elephant Summer

This summer in Danmark elephants were everywhere. First off, I stayed with my cousin in Frederiksberg in an old Carlsberg beer silo that had been renovated into apartments. The view from the apartment looked out onto the old Carlsberg brewery, whose elephant mascots grace the entryway to the old factory as well as marketing materials and their Elephant Beer.

Welcome to Carlsberg.
What a happy elephant. Looks like he has had one too many...

One of the main art attractions while we were in Copenhagen was the Elephant Parade. Over 100 five-foot elephants were placed throughout the city, each individually designed by famous and upcoming artists. The goal was to contribute to the conservation of Asian elephants and raise general public awareness about the elephants’ dwindling numbers. As a souvenir, I bought a small figurine of Lars Pugholm’s entry.

Elephant #17: Poetry by Lars Pugholm
The Royal Copenhagen elephant out in the city. (photo from tokyorevive.com)

Lastly, during a scenic drive on the east coast of Jutland we spotted a REAL, LIVE elephant outside SuperBrugsen. It was there to promote the visiting circus, which we only learned about later. In the US, this would be like seeing an elephant outside your local Safeway.

As an ode to this summer theme of pachyderms, I decided to make my own elephant portrait.

Lego Logo Wall

While in Copenhagen this summer I stopped into a Lego store to browse, and was rewarded with a little designer treat – a giant wall of Lego’s logo history, surrounded by an even more giant lego dragon hovering ominously over a replica of the fuzzy-hatted Danish soldiers that guard the royal palace.

A history of Lego logos in a Copenhagen Lego store.

Guidebook Launch Party

Last night, my friend Jen hosted a long-awaited launch party at Olympic Provisions NW for her guidebook Portland’s 100 Best Places to Stuff Your Faces. For the past year+, Jen, Shellie and I have been working on this as a side project, and it is so exciting to have the finished book in our hands.

Thanks to my landlord and photographer Steve Bloch, who is a staunch Face Stuffer supporter and took the party pics below.

Olympic Provisions NW provided a great space for the party, with appetizers and bubbly.
Lisa of Jacob's Creamery gives a toast in celebration of Jen's finished guidebook.
Jeff, myself, and Darin - we were there from the start, and we were there at the end.
The belle of the ball.
We did it!

Strammer Max and Warrior Cats

In Northern Europe there is a constant movement of spendthrifts who go to other countries to buy goods with lower taxes applied. The Swedes sail to Danmark for the “cheap” beer, while the Danes go to Germany for the “cheaper” beer. It’s pretty much a family tradition once or twice a year to pile into the car and drive to Germany to buy inexpensive things.

This year was no exception, and we all made an outing to Flensborg for some shopping and strammer max, which after reading the wikipedia description, clears up why my cousins thought it was so funny that my grandfather kept declaring he wanted his strammer max.

My cousin bought a leopard print shirt for $1, my dad bought some tennis balls, my grandpa bought some alcohol and my uncle Henrik calculated the savings made on each item in his head. I didn’t buy anything, but I did see this book series entitled Warrior Cats. Uh, awesome?

More proof that I really don't understand German taste.

Fish Bonanza, Now We’re Talking

When I saw this painting at the Hamburg Art Museum, I felt like I had met a kindred spirit. After seeing about 200 paintings about crucifixion, I was finally among artists who understood my obsessions. A two-month long binge on tuna melt sandwiches – YES! Mackerel in tomato sauce – YES! Pickled herring by the pound – YES! Fried and breaded fish – YES! Octopus rings – YES! (Well, technically there aren’t any octopus in the picture, but a girl can dream).

lots of fish resting on newspaper
Large Still Life with Fish, 1927, by Max Beckmann.