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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Stockholm in Stockholm County, Södermanland Province, Sweden — Northern Europe (Scandinavia)
 

Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument

 
 
Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument Marker image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, June 12, 2017
1. Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument Marker
Inscription.  [English translation of Swedish text below:]

On the tenth anniversary of Hjalmar Branting's death in 1935, the Social Democratic Party decided to start planning and fundraising for a monument in the North Bantorget (a park) in Stockholm to commemorate Branting. As sculptor Carl Eldh (1873-1954) had met Branting several times, and had also painted his portrait, he was commissioned directly by the board of directors. The huge relief - a tribute to the early labor movement - became Eldh's biggest and last completed work.

Carl Eldh worked for the monument for several years in his studio. Not only did it take a long time to complete the monument, but also a lot of space as an already cramped studio could barely accommodate this colossal relief. Working in clay in such a large format was impractical and Eldh decided to cut the sculpture directly to plaster. In the museum's collection there are several sketches kept, and by studying these, you can follow the work process. The final model was ready in 1942, and the idea was that it should then be cast in bronze, but because of the war this had to wait. The gypsum relief was

Marker Inset Photo: Carl Eldh works on the monument in his studio, about 1942. image. Click for full size.
By Volkmar Wentzel / Carl Eldh Ateljemuseum, circa 1942
2. Marker Inset Photo: Carl Eldh works on the monument in his studio, about 1942.
divided into parts and put into storage, and only in 1947 was it cast at Bergman's sculpture foundry in Stockholm.

The work was inaugurated on June 2, 1952, and from this time, the installation was also adorned with black and red pavers in the shape of a tree. This installation was a collaboration between Carl Eldh and architect Erik Glemme. Eldh himself was at the inauguration where Prime Minister Tage Erlander spoke and handed over the work to the City of Stockholm as a gift from the Social Democratic Party.

The monument depicts a scene from 1930s Stockholm and the motif represents Branting speaking to the people on May 1st (International Worker's Day or May Day). Branting is centrally located, almost completely independent, and stands larger-than-life, while the relay's audience is scaled 1:1. Among these, we can see the Social Democratic Pioneer Lord Palm, or August Palm, as he was actually known. The little river at Branting's feet is the least realistic feature of the work, and according to Carl Eldh, symbolizes "the spring waking up amongst the flowers". On the back of the monument one may read the inscriptions where Carl Eldh and Pär Lagerkvist wrote a few words.

[Swedish text:]

Till tioårsminnet av Hjalmar Brantings död 1935 hade socialdemokratiska partiet beslutat att starta en insamling till ett monument över Branting

Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument and Marker - Wide View image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, June 12, 2017
3. Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument and Marker - Wide View
The marker is (barely) visible on the left, between the two streetlights.
för Norra Bantorget i Stockholm. Då skulptören Carl Eldh (1873-1954) hade träffat Branting flera gånger och även utfört hans porträtt, fick han uppdraget direkt av partistyrelsen. Den enorma reliefen — en hyllning till den tidiga arbetarrörelsen — blev Eldhs största och sista fullbordade verk.

Carl Eldh arbetade på monumentet i flera år i sin ateljé. Det tog inte bara lång tid att få monumentet färdigt, utan även mycket utrymme i anspråk då en redan ganska trång ateljé skulle rymma denna kolossala relief. Att arbeta i lera i sådant stort format var opraktiskt och Eldh beslöt därför att hugga skulpturen direkt i gips. I museets samling finns flera skisser bevarade och genom att studera dessa kan man följa arbetsprocessen. Den slutliga modellen stod klar 1942 och tanken var att den då skulle gjutas i brons, men på grund kriget fick detta vänta. Gipsreliefen sågades i delar och magasinerades, och först 1947 göts den hos Bergmans konstgjuteri i Stockholm.

Verket invigdes den 2 juni 1952 och kvar från denna tid är också markens anläggning med mönster i svart smågatsten och röd sandsten i form av ett träd. Denna anläggning var ett samarbete mellan Carl Eldh och arkitekten Erik Glemme. Eldh var själv med på invigningen där statsminister Tage Erlander höll tal och överlämnade verket som en gåva från det socialdemokratiska partiet till Stockholms stad.

Monumentet

Rear Side of Branting Monument image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, June 12, 2017
4. Rear Side of Branting Monument
skildrar en scen från 1930-talets Stockholm och motivet föreställer Branting som talar till folket på första maj. Branting är centralt placerad, nästan helt fristående, och återgiven i övernaturlig storlek, medan reliefens åhörare är gjorda i skala 1:1. Bland dessa kan vi se den socialdemokratiske pionjären mäster Palm, eller August Palm som han egentligen hette. Den lilla älvan vid Brantings fötter är verkets minst realistiska inslag och symboliserar enligt Carl Eldh "våren som vaknar upp bland blommor". Titta gärna på inskriptionerna på baksidan där Carl Eldh och Pär Lagerkvist skrivit några ord.


 
Erected by Carl Eldh Ateljemuseum.
 
Location. 59° 20.112′ N, 18° 3.276′ E. Marker is in Stockholm, Södermanland Province, in Stockholm County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Vasagatan and Olaf Palmes gata. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: Vasagatan 59, Stockholm, Södermanland Province 111 20, Sweden.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. LO-Huset / LO Building (within shouting distance of this marker); Första Cirkusföreställningen i Sverige / The First Circus in Sweden (approx. 0.3 kilometers away); A Park and Gardens (approx. 0.3 kilometers away);

Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, June 12, 2017
5. Carl Eldhs Brantingsmonument / Carl Eldh's Branting Monument
Warodellska Huset / The Warodell House (approx. 0.3 kilometers away); Carl Jonas Love Almquist (approx. 0.3 kilometers away); August Strindberg (approx. 0.4 kilometers away); Varuhuset PUB / PUB Department Store (approx. 0.4 kilometers away); August Blanche (approx. 0.4 kilometers away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Stockholm.
 
More about this marker. The marker is found on the north side of the plaza that is in front of the monument.
 
Also see . . .
1. Welcome to the Carl Eldh Studio Museum (Carl Eldh Ateljemuseum). "Carl Eldh (1873-1954) was one of Sweden's most prominent sculptors during the first half of the 20th century...." (Submitted on February 3, 2018.) 

2. Hjalmar Branting (Wikipedia). "Karl Hjalmar Branting (23 November 1860 – 24 February 1925) was a Swedish politician. He was the leader of the Swedish Social Democratic Party (1907–1925), and Prime Minister during three separate periods (1920, 1921–1923, and 1924–1925). When Branting came to power in 1920, he was the first Social Democratic Prime Minister of Sweden. When he took office for a second term after the general election of 1921, he became the first socialist politician in Europe to do so following elections with universal suffrage. In 1921, Sweden's Prime Minister Hjalmar Branting shared the Nobel Peace Prize with the Norwegian secretary-general of the Inter-Parliamentary Union Christian Lous Lange." (Submitted on February 3, 2018.) 
 
Categories. Arts, Letters, MusicLabor Unions
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 4, 2018. This page originally submitted on February 3, 2018, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page has been viewed 69 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on February 3, 2018, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California.
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