Home | ABU Art
ABU Art Appreciation
ABU realized the value of imagery and the memory from the earliest days as
their catalogs started with simple line drawings, sketches and quickly moved
to B&W images, then Colour photographic images and later sculptures/relief
works in the 70's. Please enjoy these spanning nearing 5 decades starting in
ABU Early Line Art
My all time favourite image from ABU, Napp och Nytt was produced for
the 1956 catalog and evokes in me, many happy childhood fishing
moments. I certainly didn't have a fine Record casting reel like this lucky
boy, but for kids it was not the technology being employed, rather
grasping the freedom, excitement and opportunity of the moment!
May kids worldwide continue always to experience these joys!
A second image that brings back childhood fishing memories!
Friendships via fishing reminiscent of the old Rod and Real combo.
Pure enjoyment for this Lapp boy in 1960.
ABU also recognizes the low technology approach to fishing by kids with
bamboo pole and fixed line.
ABU were quick to recognize fishing could be an enjoyable family pursuit.
Girls and kids of all ages enjoy the excitement of fishing if taught
to be competent when young
These 2 Covers below from Napp och Nytt 2002/2004 grace the walls of my home
More updates courtesy of Len Borgstrom.
I just got the pictures of the bronze reliefs telling the history of sport
fishing. These are mounted in the entrance to the factory in Svängsta and were
made by Hjalmar Ekberg – at that time a worker at the factory. Two copies were
made for Garcia and mounted on their wall at their Teaneck
facility in New Jersey
and at the Conolon factory. The original plaster models were mounted in my party
room in the basement of my Svängsta home.
This was the start of Hjalmar Ekberg’s full time artist career. Jan-Erik Bergen,
who took these pictures worked for ABU in many years and is now retired.
After some discussion with Len Borgstom, (quotes below) I have
learned a lot more about the working environment of A.B.Urfabriken in
So you can see ABU's appreciation for fine art was present from the
beginning and continues to this day.
Art was not merely created on paper with pen and ink or watercolours or
photographs, it was also cast in bronze as small limited edition objects
d'art to be won in fishing competitions as well as massive corporate
casting, some of which Len Borgstrom has kindly invited us into his home to
share with us here.
The Marlin, typical universal exaggerating fisherman and School of Salmon
I was well aware of the consideration of aesthetics by the company to
produce such beautiful products but it seems the employees were immersed in
fine art even when relaxing at lunch time.
I have mentioned in my book, we also had an active Art Club at ABU. We
invited known Swedish artists to hang their art in the ABU cafeteria so that
every employee got a chance to constantly be exposed to fine art."
We all remember the beautiful
Jubilee year in 1971 when the covers of Napp och Nytt /Tight Lines changed
from the traditional photographic fishing images to artistic paintings.
approach lasted for 10 years only.
covers of Napp
well known artists. We got tired of doing what everybody else did – having
products or some fisherman holding a fish on the cover. I have mentioned
this in my book. We started with that idea 1971 with a famous illustrator Ib
Thaning , Denmark. 1972
Gunnar Brusewitz, Sweden
I forgot who made 1973, 1974 Harald
1975 with Tom Sayers and Huckleberry Finn,
(this artist also
made animated movies). 1976 was an American artist (Scott), 1977 Ralph Judell, Sweden.
1978 the name of the Swedish artist was Arenhill. 1979 an artist from
Checkoslovakia, 1980 a Danish well known artist Mads Stage, I do not know
who made the leaping salmon 1981, but I would think that Bengt Olofsson
would know. As you know, I left for the
1978 and the last picture that I picked was Mads Stage"
ABU was also responsible for furthering the artistic careers of several of
employees ended up being full time sculptors. One of them (Hjalmar Ekberg) made
the four piece relief showing the history of fishing, hanging in the entrance
stairways to the main factory in Svangsta. The other artist (Johnny Martinsson)
made the relief showing my father located outside the same factory.
ABU noted Sportfishing in Literature
Hopefully more to follow....