A new generation of artists

Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

The auditorium at the House of Culture (Kulturhuset) in Stockholm is not recognizable. It´s filled with large tables with paper, paints, pens and paper. And many artists. It´s children from the Spanish School in Stockholm participating in Isol’s award week workshop. Isol talks passionately and uses a big screen to show images. The children are listening. And ask questions, both in Spanish and Swedish. Isol talks about her book Secreto de familia, where a child discovers that even her friends and classmates try to conceal what their mothers get up to at home when no-one is watching. Isol asks if the children can draw a family member as an animal.

The pedagogues from Kulturhuset (who have planned the workshop with Isol) help the children in their creativity. Most students are very concentrated creating animals. Isol talks to each one individually. – What does your animal sound like? she asks. The auditorium is filled with noises. – What will you call your animal? She gets many suggestions.

Finally, all students hold up their work for Isol to have a look. Then it´s time for next workshop, now with a bit older students.

Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

–          Hola!, says Isol.

–          Hola! says the children.

–          Habla Espanol? asks Isol.

–          Si, the children replys.

Isols talks about her work with Numeralia, among other things.

–          For me, the picture comes first, then the text. But sometimes, another person is writing the text.

Then she talks about her co-opertion with Argentinian poet Jorge Luján.

Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

–          Give me a numer, Isol says.

–          6, shouts a boy.

Isol draws the number six on a big paper. And put two eyes in the number.

–          New number! she cries out.

–          8, says another student.

And then number eight turns into a mouth. Then the children calls number after number, until Isol has drawn a figure.

Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

Isol also talks about how she uses colors to intensify her images, and mention her newly translated book into Swedish; Petit, the monster.

–          Petit is a fine little boy, who loves to play with his dog. But sometimes he´s a bit naughty and pulls the girls´ hair. And you´re not supposed to do that.

She also talks about her book Nocturno.

–          This book is about secrets.

–          I like very much to work with dreams. And this book is in fact a book with dream recipes.

Then Nocturno is distributed to all students. Isol asks them to open the page with the first dream. On each table is a desk lamp, and as the pages of the book is made of fluorescent paper, the children are asked to “load” the page under the lamp. There´s some fuss in the audience as there are not as many lamps as there are books. The light in the auditorium is switched off, and now 50 pages of Noctorno lights up the room. Many “wows” can be heard in the audience.

Then all children work very concentrated creating their own dream recipes.

Dreams in Nocturno. Photo: Helene Andersson

Dreams in Nocturno. Photo: Helene Andersson

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