Starting today at Chronicles of the Witch Queen, we’ll be showing some of Daniel’s sculptures based on the comics. These were exhibited in Oslo in the mid-to-late 1990s, mostly as part as installations.
In his day job as a fine artist, Daniel is, I guess, a modern surrealist or magic realist. He works in a variety of media: painting, music and sculpture. His paintings tend to be large and use pale, translucent colours. His sculpture, on the other hand, is made at a small scale using paper pulp. Daniel’s arthritis caused him to lose strength in his hands, so he can’t work with tough, heavy materials. Paper pulp, while not durable, is lightweight and easy to move, so it’s served him well in his temporary installations at galleries. Daniel reuses the individual pieces in different installations; especially his renditions of the Baron von Fieffelfalsfaffel (to be shown on the site later in the week) have shown up in different places over the years. Characters from the comics used in the sculpture groups also show up again in the paintings, on record covers and in animations.
When I visited Oslo in 1996, I saw both Daniel’s work room and one small exhibit in a gallery there. The small scale, simple colors and materials make the installations look like worlds built with toys, like you used to do as a kid. Childhood nostalgia is a big theme in Daniel’s work.
A quick reminder and explanation for new readers:
Chronicles of the Witch Queen is a collection of comics by Geir Strøm, Daniel Østvold and me, set in the same universe. They’re humorous fantasy comics about the Undercity ruled by Queen Elspeth, the Witch Queen. Currently finished stories are:
The Double by Geir and Daniel. Servants Prudi and Tapper become embroiled in a Countess’s plot to become Witch Queen instead of the Witch Queen.
The Eye of the Underworld by Geir and me. Queen Elspeth sends the alchemist Ioannes von Kildenbusch out to retrieve a magic jewel from the palace of Caliph Iznobezzer.
Thousandstab by Geir and Daniel. A short tale of enchanted household objects.
Staff Cutbacks by Geir and Daniel. Countess Alcydia can’t get good staff, or get rid of the staff she doesn’t need.
Courtly Manners by me. Duchess Guðrún introduces two debutants at Queen Elspeth’s semi-annual ball. Paying subscribers only, for the time being.
Courtly Manners 2: The Unicorn Race by Geir and me. Against all expectations, Kel and Krakatoa are reinvited to Queen Elspeth’s little do. Little do they know they’re being used as part of a dastardly plot against the Queen. Paying subscribers only, for the time being.
The current series of Odds and Ends is an extended filler before our Christmas story starts running in December. It contains sketches, alternate pages and artworks derived from the Chronicles of the Witch Queen comics.