Sunday 29 December 2019

Wheel of Life

2009: Albertus Pictor (Engraver - L Sjööblom)
I turn to the Wheel of Life as we approach a new year.  Sweden's great medieval artist Albertus Pictor created this and other frescoes in Härkeberga Church, Uppsala.  The stamps show the start of the life, the middle and the end as the wheel endlessly turns. The mini sheet was issued for 500 years since Albertus Pictor (Albert the Painter) "left time" but his frescoes live on and can be seen in 37 of Sweden's churches.

One of Albertus Pictor's fresco's in Täby church located just outside of Stockholm show death playing chess inspired
2008: Ingmar Bergman (Design - A Wiklund; Engraver - Martin Mörck)
Ingmar Bergman who wrote and directed the 'The Seventh Seal' (1957) the story of a knight on a spiritual quest in a plague ravaged land who challenges Death to a game of chess.  The knight was played by the wonderful Max von Sydow and Death by - Bengt Ekerot.  Bergman struggled for finance so this was a low budget affair which had to be made quickly, unlike
2008: Ingmar Bergman 1918-2007 (Design - Gustav Martensson; Engraver - L Sjööblom)
Fanny and Alexander (1983) which was lavish and long with a mind-blowing number of costumes.  The episodic TV version ran for five hours and the cinema release (which won four Oscars) was cut to just over 3 hours.  The mini sheet shows Bergman on the set and as this sheet is a memorial is in black and white.  From my not always reliable memory one of the things I always remember about the film are the colours. 

Sunday Stamps II is 'Your Choice' this week - to see what choices have been made - See It On A Postcard 

Sunday 22 December 2019

Happy Christmas

1988:Christmas Post (Design - Mats Rehnman; Engraver - Zlatko Jakus)
Two birds sing out the joy of Christmas on this FDC, both it and the stamps are created by Mats Rehnman.
The whole delightful sheet and the Christmas scene. 
1995: Christmas
An Post's Christmas theme in 1995 was the illuminated manuscripts of Benedotto Bardone (1460-1531)
considered the last of the great manuscript illuminators.
1980:Christmas Morning (Design - Yvon Laroche of a painting by Frank Charles Hennessey)
Lastly a day to celebrate in church and one of the 43  'Painters of Canada' Christmas serigraphs originally created for Coutts/Hallmark Cards in 1931.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas

Sunday Stamps II theme this week is - Religious Christmas - See It On A Postcard

Sunday 15 December 2019

Snow At Christmas

2007: Christmas Post (Design: Ingrid Vang Nyman)
Mr Nillsson is helping Pippi Longstocking by cutting out spicy Christmas biscuits. It was Astrid Lindgren's 100th anniversary in 2007 so for Postnord it was an easy choice for a stamp subject.
2007: Merry Christmas  - Look, Its Snowing (Design - Ilon Wikland)
I think the title on the stamp booklet "Se, det snöar" (Look, it's snowing) may be a title of one of Astrid Lindgren's stories and her long time illustrator Ilon Wikland brings it to life.
2003: Christmas Stamps (Design - Stina Langlo Ördal)
I wonder if Father Christmas is going to be left one of the biscuits when
he leaves his present.
2008: Christmas stamps (Design - Kjell E Midthun)
Gnomes also leave presents on Christmas Eve but they prefer porridge to biscuits.

Sunday Stamps II theme this week is - Secular Christmas - See It On A Postcard

Sunday 8 December 2019

Places of Worship

Featured on this Maximum card is the 'Angelic Salutation' which hangs in St Lawrence's Church in Nuremberg at the centre of the choir facing the high altar. Carved in lime wood it was completed in 1518 and shows the Virgin Mary and Archangel Gabriel surrounded by roses and with small angels ringing bells and playing musical instruments
1989: 16th Century Carving by Veit Stoss (Design - Herbert Stelzer)
like this one.  It survived the reformation although for many centuries it was shrouded with a cloth, only on display for special occasions, but today it can be seen in all its glory.  There was also a gilded cross but this has been lost.
1986: 450th Anniversary Danish Reformation (Design - M Stürup)
The reformation is in full swing here and shows a Lutheran Communion Service. The stamp is a detail from an altar panel from Torslunde Church which I believe is now in the National Museum, Copenhagen.
2013: Christmas Stamp Gallery
Wearing its winter dress is St Catherine's Church, Port Erin in the Isle of Man.  Built in the 19th Century by a benefactor it is constructed of Manx slate.  The Isle of Man picked 5 stamps from past Christmas issues to reissue in 2013
and this one has the added benefit of a postbox with church.  They have cropped the original design but the original (which I don't have) is much better -
1990: Christmas (Design - Clive Abbott)
The full snowy1990 Christmas set can be seen here.

Sunday Stamps II theme this week is - Places of Worship - congregate at See It On A Postcard

Sunday 1 December 2019

Small Animals

2009: Snövita Djur - Snow White Animals (Illustrator - Staffan Ullström; Engraver - Piotr Naszarkowski)
The magic of snow and a trio of fauna wearing their winter coats.  The winter scenes feature a Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus muta) although in Canada and Scotland is simply known as ptarmigan, a word derived from the Scottish Gaelic for croaker. Next is a stoat but as it is in its winter finery - an ermine (or in Swedish Hermelin).  Lastly a Mountain Hare (Lepus timidus)  a bundle of fur and twitching whiskers. These were the International Christmas Mail stamps, sending a little bit of Sweden 's winter out into the world.
1997: Spotted Polecat (Design - D Vasarheli)
This little chap could almost be wearing a trapper hat although all the fabulous fur is growing on a marbled or spotted polecat (Vormela peregusna)
seen here going about its daily life. When alarmed it arches its back and curls its tail and may inflict a foul smell emanating from under that tail if threatened.
2013: SEPAC - Young Animals of the Alpine Region (Design - Eric Beck)
Among the mountains of Liechtenstein a young marmot is coming out of its burrow. A shrill whistle is used as a warning to other marmots of predators, hope this one has sharp hearing while it is out in the open. 
2013: SEPAC - Baby Animals (Design - Marta Gullklett)
I started in winter but here is the promise of spring with cute little bundles of wool. The Faroe Islands lambs arrive in late April.

Lost Sheep on top of the York Left Luggage Office

Sunday Stamps II theme this week is - small animals - appreciate the small things in life at - See It On A Postcard