Harbor, Svolvaer, Lofoten

Media - 1967.59.893 - SAAM-1967.59.893_1 - 2803
Copied William H. Johnson, Harbor, Svolvaer, Lofoten, 1937, oil on burlap, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Harmon Foundation, 1967.59.893

Artwork Details

Harbor, Svolvaer, Lofoten
2737 14 in. (68.594.5 cm.)
Credit Line
Gift of the Harmon Foundation
Mediums Description
oil on burlap
  • Landscape — mountain
  • Landscape — Norway — Lofoten
  • Landscape — Norway — Svolvaer
  • Waterscape — harbor — Svolvaer Harbor
  • Waterscape — boat
Object Number

Artwork Description

In 1937, William H. Johnson and his Danish wife, Holcha, made their way north of the Arctic Circle to the settlement of Svolvaer in Norway’s Lofoten Islands. Thickly applied colors capture strong contrasts of light and shadow and animate the rugged terrain and fishing boats in the harbor. In letters to friends, Holcha called the Lofotens “marvelously beautiful” and wrote that her husband climbed the hills every day to capture the scenery in different light and weather. This canvas shows the twin peaks of the “Svolvaer Goat,” a landmark in the islands that remains famous to this day.