Tove Jansson: Sculptor’s Daughter

My father’s sculpture with The Sculptor’s Daughter.

This book was a birthday present I received years ago; given to me perhaps because I, too, am a sculptor’s daughter.

If not for the wintry setting, my childhood would not have strayed too far from Tove Jansson’s. Ice and snow aside, I immediately recognized the environment of an artist’s household! A world of creativity and wonder in which the gravest insult one can muster is, “You are not an artist!” Haha!

I know what it’s like to be made aware of chiaroscuro, composition, shapes, and shades, and to perceive the world with this awareness so early in life; and to realize only as an adult that this is rather unconventional.

Sculptor’s Daughter is the first book she wrote for adults, and although written in her senior years, Tove Jansson is once again a child speaking with simplicity and a disarming, childlike wisdom. She makes indelible images of amusing experiences, encounters, and juvenile feelings, and often leaves traces of artistic ideals.

While this may not fall under the category of books I would readily recommend to anyone, I would suggest it for days when a reader wishes to revisit a particular place called Childhood.

“The smaller you are, the bigger Christmas is.”

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