Broadcaster Lesley Riddoch brings her Nordic House tour to Perth

Award-winning journalist, commentator and broadcaster Lesley Riddoch will take guests on a guided tour of the Nordic House art exhibition in the Local and Family History department at Perth’s AK Bell Library next month.

The special event on Thursday, February 2, from 6-8pm, is a unique chance to hear more about the exhibition’s origins and contributors from its director Lesley Riddoch in an informal setting.

Nordic House was first unveiled in July 2015 at the Storytelling Centre on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile.

Exploring the links between Scotland and the Nordic nations, it showcases wild Arctic seascapes, Icelandic lava fields, Denmark’s oldest allotment gardens, women fishing on the Baltic, and a subsidence-threatened Swedish mining town.

The exhibition includes reproductions of work by:

  • Kaare Espolin Johnson (1907-1994) – who produced striking images of people and seascapes from his native Finnmark in northern Norway despite being almost blind.
  • Johannes Sveinsson Kjarval (1885-1972) – an orphan and fisherman who became Iceland’s most prolific painter using a variety of styles to depict landscape and lava formation.
  • Åland women – photographs from three collections showing women fishing, working as merchant seamen and sailing from the Finnish Åland islands to Helsinki in the 1920s.
  • Vennelyst – photos of Copenhagen’s oldest allotment gardens where families traditionally moved to live for the summer – comparing life at the turn of two centuries — 1900 and 2000.
  • Kiruna – photos and a film of the Arctic Swedish mining town, currently being moved 4kms, building by building, to avoid a massive crack in the earth caused by subsidence.

Fair City Knits will also be exhibiting their work alongside the art.

Lesley Riddoch is a great admirer of the Nordic way of life. She co-founded the think tank, Nordic Horizons, with Scottish Government funding in 2010. This project brought Nordic experts and specialists to Scotland to share social policy insights and experiences.

Lesley studied for a PhD with Strathclyde and Oslo universities comparing the cabin traditions of Norway and Scotland. Her book ‘Blossom: What Scotland Needs To Flourish’ also explores how the Nordic nations manage to attain top places in international league tables of productivity, wellbeing, health and GDP.

Helen Smout, Chief Executive of Culture Perth and Kinross welcomed the exhibition to Perth.

She said: “Scotland has long celebrated its links with the Nordic nations and Culture Perth and Kinross is delighted to welcome such an important and fascinating touring exhibition to Perth. The added attraction of Lesley Riddoch’s talk is a real coup for the AK Bell Library and looks certain to generate huge interest in the subject.”

Tickets for Lesley Riddoch’s Nordic House Tour cost £3 and are available via Advance booking is advised