Date: Tuesday, July 1, 1958
Had an all day tour of Oslo this morning. First of all we went to Frogner Park with all its statues by Vigeland. These were all figures (naked at that) depicting various scenes from life. About this time I really envied those statues ’cause I was still in my suit skirt and sweater. Our suitcases still hadn’t shown up.
After the park we went to the town hall, with its various murals painted on all the walls and ceilings. Quite impressing. (Also went out to the ski jump.) As we drove up for lunch, a welcome sight awaited us – our suitcases had arrived! Everyone immediately changed into cottons, and after a lunch of pork chops, we set out on another bus tour, this time going to see the Fram, Kon-tiki the famous raft, and the old Viking Ships. Here Sue and I tore ourselves away long enough from Stan and his Wikings to go to the little girl’s sand-box. Had quite an experience here as I locked myself in, and had visions of spending weeks there when I finally figured out the combination and escaped. We stopped at the Royal Norwegian Yacht Club for something to drink and then went out to the Folk-museum where Stan took us through more of those old 200-year-old houses – when you’ve seen one you’ve seen them all!
After eating at an inn, and watching some folk-dancers we started home. Betsy, Mary T, Sally, and I decided to go to the show, Bonjour Tristesse, in English with Norwegian sub-titles. We got lost on the way home, took the wrong tram, met a Norwegian boy who straightened us out and walked us home, then met two French drunks. Sue and I ended the evening by washing our rain coats in the shower!
The Vigeland Sculpture Park, also known as Vigelandsparken, is the most popular tourist destination in Norway. The area is located within Frogner Park and covers 80 acres. The park features 212 bronze, granite, and cast iron sculptures by Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland and holds the world record for being the largest sculpture park created by a single artist. The park opened to the public in 1940.
The park was born from a dispute in which the city of Oslo was forced to demolish Vigeland’s home. The city eventually gave Vigeland a new building in which he could work and live. In return, the artist promised to donate all of his subsequent work to the city. Vigeland worked on his sculptures from 1924 to 1943. Vigeland celebrated the human body and created sculptures of people in various stages of life – no two are alike.
Gustav Vigeland is also known for having designed the Nobel Peace Prize Medal.