Take one person with a bright idea, add a second one, a third one and keep going. If one collects enough clever and ambitious people together in one room a critical mass is achieved, and the result is an explosion of creativity. That is what happened in Stockholm last night, as some 30 fashion designers, artists, and other folk from Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Norway—and some brilliant Estonians—got together in a gallery to chat, show their projects, and network.
ÖÖ, meaning “night” in Estonian, is a temporary gallery, showroom and concept store showcasing work by young avant-garde creatives from six Nordic countries. This 4-day event is taking place in a building appropriately called Fantasihuset (Fantasy House), at Galleri Duerr in Stockholm.

The cross-border network and exhibit is the brainchild of London-based Estonian Marilyn Keskula, who put together the Swedish arm of the event with the assistance of Sweden’s Lotta Grahn.

“We launched this in London in September during the London Fashion Week. Next we are going to Copenhagen in February,” Ms. Grahn told Scandinavian Fashion. The plan is to tour all of the countries in the Nordic region, moving on to NYC and Tokyo in 2012.

We bounced from one interesting person to another. Among those we met were London-based Icelandic photographer Saga Sig and illustrator Elli Egilsson, who goes by the name AC Bananas. Designer Eygló Margrét Lárusdóttir also crossed our path; we’ll write more about her later. She also comes from the land of fiery volcanoes and financial fireworks.

We chatted with Swedish fashion designer Lotta Barlach, and were very impressed with her “Work and Play” collection (More about her in a subsequent article). We also met researcher and designer Kärt Ojave. This multi-talented Estonian has developed a method to make patterns on paper and textiles which are only visible in the sunlight. Interactive textiles=very cool!.

The sounds at the launch party were provided by Swedish song maker Anders af Scherp and New York-native DJ Mills, who was spinning the vinyl. Close to the entrance we spotted art/fashion designer Naim Josefi, who explained that his fantastic linked, knitted creations are “about a future society, where people are helping each other in a spirit of love.”

Also on the list of participants was a Norwegian I wanted to meet, Danish fashion designer Vilsbol de Arce, and Finnish accessories designer Kirsi Nisonen, who had kindly informed me about the event in the first place. But that’s OK.
That just means we have an excuse to visit Fantasy House another day, to meet the people I missed. Wednesday Nov. 17 is Buyers’ Day, but the delightful gathering will continue until Saturday. All photos: Erika Lager.

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