The Soil Becomes Warmer

undefined undefined undefined, 1903 - 1903, 650 x 718 mm

Lillehammer kunstmuseum, Einar Lundes samling

A woman wearing a red dress and dark cap carries a heavy cauldron full of glowing coals through a landscape. She enters from the left and walks towards the river, which runs between large and small stones on a steep slope. The format is dominated by the rural landscape and the sky lies like a narrow rim along the upper edge of the picture. This accentuates the steep incline of the slope. The naked trees and the fields that range from yellow and brown to green, indicate that the motif is a spring landscape.

The motif of the old woman with a cauldron full of glowing coals also exists as a pen drawing from Astrup’s hand. This drawing is a key to understanding the story the painting conveys. The pen drawing entitled “Huldra in Jølst” was used to illustrate the book Svanøen i Søndfjord (Svanøen in Søndfjord) (1912). The Illustration accompanied three short stories, and it stated there that they were originally told by Anders Aalhus, but that Astrup had translated them into the Jølster dialect for the book. The story of the huldra (a seductive woodland creature in Scandinavian folklore) tells of a woman who appears when the winter drags on too long. She walks along the river with her cauldron, depositing glowing coals into the frozen river to melt the ice.

The Soil Becomes Warmer was shown for the first time in the artist’s solo exhibition in Bergen Art Society in 1908, with the title “A Jølster Tale of the Spring Night”. The painting was for sale for Kr. 70, but when no one bought it, it was sent to a group exhibition of Norwegian artists in Hamar the same year. It was here Einar Lunde most likely bought the painting, and he later donated it to the city of Lillehammer. Today the painting is included in the collection of Lillehammer Art Museum. 

In Astrup’s personal list of works from 1927, he made it known that he had executed two painted versions of this motif. While The Soil Becomes Warmer is listed as a sketch, the artist considered the other version, Landscape – which is unknown as of today – to be the completed work. 

1903-1908:

Nikolai Astrup

(1880-1928)

1908-1921:

Einar Lunde

(1875-1951)

1908-5-3 - 1908-5-27

Nikolai Astrups Maleriutstilling

Bergen

48

1911-1-22 - 1911-2-12

Nikolai Astrup

Kristiania (Oslo)

[49]

1928-10-10 - 1928-11-4

Nikolai Astrup. Mindeutstilling

Bergen

39

1928-11-11 - 1928-12-9

Nikolai Astrup. Mindeutstilling

Kristiania (Oslo)

39

1955-1-10 - 1955-12-31

Nikolai Astrup. Malerier og tresnitt

Oslo

19

1956-11-2 - 1956

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928

Stockholm

12

1965-12-1 - 1965-12-19

Nikolai Astrup

København

6

1971-1-13 - 1971-2-2

Nikolai Astrup

Oslo

9

1980-3-14 - 1980-4-7

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. Maleri, tegning, grafikk

Bergen

15

1980-4-12 - 1980-5-4

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. Maleri, tegning, grafikk

Oslo

15

1980-6-4 - 1980-6-29

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. Maleri, tegning, grafikk

Trondheim

15

1987-5-23 - 1987-9-30

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928

Åmot

8

1989-6-19 - 1989-8-14

Nikolai Astrup og den tekstile kunsten

Sandalstrand, Jølster

32

2016-5-1 - 2016-5-5

Nikolai Astrup Painting Norway

London

91

2016-6-10 - 2016-9-11

Nikolai Astrup Norske Landskap

Oslo

91

2016-10-2 - 2017-1-22

Nikolai Astrup: Norwegen. Eine Entdeckung

Emden

91

1908-7 - 1908-9-1

Kunstudstillingen fra Hamar ('Hamarudstillingen')

[no]

1915-11-10 - 1915-12

Den norske kunstudstilling

København:

2

1930-12 - 1931-1

Kunstnerforbundet gjennem 20 år

Oslo

1

1973-9-11 - 1973-9-29

Stemningslandskap

Oslo

2

1973-10-18 - 1973-11-3

Stemningslandskap

Bergen

2

1973-11-8 - 1973-11-24

Stemningslandskap

Stavanger

2

Kunstnernes Hus. Nikolai Astrup. Malerier og tresnitt. Oslo: Kunstnernes Hus, 1955.

Bergens kunstforening. Katalog over Nikolai Astrups Maleriutstilling. Bergen: Bergens kunstforening, 1908.

Charlottenborg. Den norske kunstudstilling . København: Charlottenborg, 1915.

Kunstnerforbundet. Kunstnerforbundet gjennom 20 år. Oslo: Kunstnerforbundet, 1931.

Loge, Øystein. Betrothed to Nature. Oslo: Det Norske Samlaget, 2010.

Bergens Kunstforening. Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. Mindeutstilling. Bergen: Bergens kunstforening, 1928.