In this latest instalment of the ‘Inspired by’ series we look at the art, design, film, music and literature produced by the countries of Scandinavia. We will explore the development of Scandinavian classical music and, including Finland in our overview, we will look at the role of the composer Sibelius in the forging of modern Finnish national identity.
Scandinavian art and design is perhaps the most obvious cultural export – from the IKEA items in nearly every British home to the quirky Oxford Synagogue, the core of which was designed by the great Danish architect and designer, Arne Jacobsen. ‘Scandi’ design has been synonymous with cool since the 1950s but long before that fine artists across the Scandinavian region created paintings, sculptures and worked to the highest level in applied arts including jewellery and glass.
Each country of the Scandinavian region has its own rich history in literature, starting with ancient texts in languages such as old Norse. We will focus on later literature, looking at 19th century writers in particular.
Finally, our lecture on film will look at how Scandinavian film makers have forged a unique style, inspired by their own surroundings and cultural history.