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Notes, Vihamanaafushi, Indian Ocean

During the early summer of 2023 the Swedish artist Elisabeth Frieberg worked on – and finalized - the 142 square meters site-specific mural Notes, Vihamanaafushi, Indian Ocean at the Stockholm School of Economics. The beautiful, thought-provoking artwork vibrating with colors is a fantastic new piece in the school´s permanent collection.


SSE Professor Sara Rosengren, Head of Center for Retailing, and the artist Elisabeth Frieberg, in June 2023. Photo: Ulrika Campbell

The mural is based on color notes that Elisabeth Frieberg took during a visit at Vihamanaafushi, one of the islands in the Maldives, in 2019. Having Frieberg’s notes taking shape on the walls of Center for Retailing at SSE can be seen as a reminder to the importance of actively keeping track of what you experience. Note taking is a skill perhaps more often associated with the life of students than that of artists. But, paying attention, taking note, is a key skill that we all need to nurture regardless of our chosen path. Through note taking we can store experiences for the future. Through note taking we move from passive consumers of experiences and knowledge to active creators of ideas and insights. There is research showing how note taking by hand leads to a more active processing of the content and better memory and learning than other approaches, such as typing or recording what has been said.

Also, the mural is reminding us of places vulnerable to climate change. The Maldives are, as we all know, a symbol for the devastation of climate change. Rising sea levels, ocean acidification killing the protecting coral reefs, and an increase in the frequency and severity of natural disasters are some of the issues confronting this island nation. With an average elevation of just 1.5 meters above sea level the Maldives is the lowest-lying country in the world and this makes it particularly vulnerable to the impact of rising sea levels.

Elisabeth Frieberg can be called a modern, abstract landscape painter, and her Notes, Vihamanaafushi, Indian Ocean will from now on remind students and faculty at the school not only about the wonders of nature, but also of the responsibility we all have for the conditions on our earth.

Notes, Vihamanaafushi, Indian Ocean, 2023, by Elisabeth Frieberg is a nearly 150 square meters mural that can be found in the premises of the school ´s three-year specialized business program in Retail Management, at Saltmätargatan 13-17, connecting the ground floor with the rooms in the basement.

For questions:

Tinni Ernsjöö Rappe, director Art Initiative, tinni.rappe@hhs.se

Sara Rosengren, Professor of Business Administration (Marketing) and Head of Center for Retailing (CFR), sara.rosengren@hhs.se

A note on notes - read a text by Sara Rosengren about Elisabeth Friberg´s artwork.

stårende.jpgPhoto: Tinni Ernsjöö Rappe