(near the central harbor of Stavanger)
42 x 48 in
art n sci email@example.com
Date: May 26 2005
Haugland was getting started as an artist in the town of Stavanger Norway during the early years of the 20th Century. My grandfather, Osmund Osmundsen, was a friend of his (probably in high school) and before immigrating to NYC from Stavanger Norway he asked Erik to paint him a picture of the market square down near the central harbor of Stavanger.
Erik Haugland was influenced by the cubism he was exposed to while he studied in Paris. The clouds in this painting clearly have a cubist 'feel.' [The painting] presently hangs in my sister's home.
Haugland didn't paint a lot of pictures although there are several in the Royal Museum in Oslo. ( . . .)
Erik Haugland's painting of the Fisketorget (fish market) near the Stavanger inner harbor was because I thought you would know. I'm certain he never met up with John Singer Sargent. He may have met picasso while he was in Paris but never Sargent.
This is the largest painting my family owns. A second cousin of mine who lives in Stavanger and had been the Arts and Culture editor for the Stavanger News Paper for 30 years said that Erik Haugland's work is primarily known along the west coast of Norway and his subject matter has most often been of ordinary people at a time when most people in Norway were very poor.
This would have assured that Haugland didn't move in the same circles as did Sargent. But his work inspired me to visit this fish market and imagine what it was like for my grandfather to ask his friend for a painting of the market and docks where he spent much of his time so he could see it every day after leaving Norway and settling in NYC.
Asking someone to do a painting for you isn't an ordinary kind of question so you might ask about my grandfather's self image. He certainly had a lot of self confidence and must have believed he had an appointment with destiny when he prepared to leave Stavanger. In fact he did, after working as a rigger in NYC helping to move buildings for the extension of the subway into the old downtown near South Ferry and Wall Street his skills as an expert rigger became known to the Roebling Sons. They hired him to be their engineering representative in Panama during the construction of the Panama Canal. I made a web page about that. He used to tell me stories about how he, with little more than a high school education, used to fix the messes that the architects and PhD engineers had wrong in their designs. He was the go to guy who made it happen...in the air as all the earth and concrete used to move through the air on rigging cables he set up and oversaw.
Well I guess I have run off at the keyboard.
By: Natasha Wallace
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