Karin Oldfelt : " Poetry and pictures are two sides of the same language"

By Mario Casasús

 

 

Mexico DF - In digital interview from Stockholm, Karin Oldfelt , Swedish artist , talks about his friendship with Pablo Neruda : " She loved the arts and loved to fill his poetry with beautiful images. He was also a friend of the great artists such as Picasso. We, my husband and I were at a dinner at the Embassy of Chile in Paris with Pablo Neruda as host, and David Alfaro Siqueiros as a guest of honor. Neruda 's poetry contains many pictures . Poetry and pictures are two sides of the same language. " Neruda was inspired to write the poems in the book Tsunami (1970 ) in the woodcuts of Karin Oldfelt .

The diplomat interviewed Ulf Hjertonsson Neruda in 1968 - for the Swedish Radio, Karin Oldfelt recalls : "The meeting went well and Neruda began to invite us, with our son, to go on weekends to Isla Negra " . The couple returned to Sweden , but returned to see Neruda in Stockholm, when he received the Nobel Prize (1971 ) , and in Paris , when he was Ambassador of the People's Unity. Ulf Hjertonsson returned to Chile in September 1973 to assist the Ambassador Edelstam with procedures for safe conduct , and together Neruda visited the Santa Maria Clinic. Hjertonsson first talked about Neruda 's death at the Swedish Radio ( 1973) and last year told the judge Mario Chariot. In the opinion of Oldfelt Karin : "I think a serious investigation , and follow the news Neruda Case " .

MC - . Neruda published the book " Tsunami " (1970 ), 17 poems inspired by the 15 woodcuts that you did. When he met the poet ?
KO - . I met him through my husband was sent to Isla Negra by the Swedish Radio , which had no correspondent in Santiago , and wanted to do interviews with the ten greatest writers of the world. My husband newcomer to the South American country, as second secretary at the Swedish Embassy in Santiago , it was with great pride Neruda to interview and record the conversation. The meeting went well and Neruda began to invite us, with our son, to go on weekends to Isla Negra .

MC . - They used to talk about art with Neruda and his artist friends ?
KO - . Pablo not told me about the visual arts, or of his artist friends . But then I found several times at his home in Isla Negra his artist friends , as Nemesio Antunez and Mario Toral.

MC - . Did you ever talked to about your project Neruda " Cantalao " village for artists and poets ?
KO - . Pablo I never talk about this project , I do not know .

MC - . The first edition of " Tsunami " (1970 ) consists of 110 copies , was until 1991 that the book was published massively in Chile, her husband Ulf Hjertonsson did the Swedish translation . What do you think of the distance of the book that was unknown and now is globally admired for their beauty woodcuts ?
KO - . 's Tsunami correct that the book was published in Chile in 1991, but was also published that year in Germany. Translating my husband was published in Sweden in 2003.
Hard to say, but I think the military coup slowed efforts to launch the book. The first edition was published by Tsunami Society Contemporary Art . The great majority of the board of this society was left and many left the country after the coup. The publication in Germany in 1991 , it was important to make it known to the world the book Tsunami . The film Il Postino (The Postman ) also helped reawaken a great worldwide interest in Neruda and his work .

MC - . Who has the original woodcuts of the 15 " Tsunami "?
KO - . The first 110 copies have original woodcuts , hand- made by me . The book number one contains several handwritten poems by Pablo .

MC - . Where have mounted the exhibition " Tsunami " with 15 woodcuts ?
KO - . Showcasing my woodcuts shown at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Santiago , Valparaíso , Temuco and currently in Isla Negra .

MC - . ? Neruda had planned to do another book with you, letters preserved by the Chilean poet?
KO - . Did not talk about doing another book. Yes we have, for example, a letter handwritten by Neruda where he proposed us to do the book Tsunami .

MC - . Sweden 's Foreign Ministry sent Ulf Hjertonsson to Chile, in September 1973 , to help the Ambassador Edelstam to process outstanding letters of transit , do you still remember what you spoke with her husband to return to Sweden ?
KO - . Yeah, spoke of horrible things he had seen and experienced during the coup in Chile. He also mentioned his last meeting with Pablo Neruda, the September 22, 1973 , one day before the poet's death .

MC - . What do you think of the judicial investigation into the death of Neruda?
KO - . I think a serious investigation , and follow the news Neruda Case .

. MC - The September 13, 1973 Neruda inaugurate the Carrillo Gil Collection , the final text of the poet was the presentation of the catalog : " Three men " ( Siqueiros , Rivera and Orozco) . The coup prevented the opening ; Mexico reprise the idea in 2014. What symbolism is to you that the last text Neruda is dedicated to the visual arts ?
KO - . She loved the arts and loved to fill his poetry with beautiful images. He was also a friend of the great artists such as Picasso. We, my husband and I were at a dinner at the Embassy of Chile in Paris with Pablo Neruda as host, and David Alfaro Siqueiros as a guest of honor. Neruda 's poetry contains many pictures . Poetry and pictures are two sides of the same language .

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