Thursday, March 15, 2018

"Time is not money and spending it isn’t a sin"/ Inge Löök’s Merry Aunties

Inge Löök (real name Ingeborg Lievonen) is a Finnish artist born in Helsinki in 1951.

She was once a professional gardener, but today she is most famous for her Granny postcards which so many postcrossers love and collect.

When she was a child, Inge lived with her family in a 7-storey building in Helsinki. In the same building lived two older women, Alli and Fifi, who later became the inspiration for the characters in her postcards.
She says the women look nearly the same as their real-life models… but they have a lot more fun!

Inge’s look on life is one of optimism and happiness, and it shows on the pictures she draws.
The grannies are always happy and having fun, and their motto is “Time is not money and spending it isn’t a sin”.


* * *
It was in the mid-1970s that Inge Löök started working both as a graphic artist and as a gardener.
At the same time, she started illustrating books and other printed material as a freelancer for various employers.

Today, she feels that her drawing requires the gardening tasks to balance her every day life. When it rains and it’s dark outside it feels fine to stay inside, but not when the sun shines and it’s warm. Everything in life is about balance.
It’s a great joy and fortune to do what one really enjoys.

Nature is of immense importance to Inge Löök. During long periods of time she sits and watches, with her binoculars, how a spider systematically knits its web.

Inge Löök drew the first four images of the Merry Aunties in 2003.
These illustrations were intended as Valentine’s Day cards, but unexpectedly, the season became quite long.
“I couldn’t understand why the cards became so popular and I still have a hard time understanding why two toothless and not so attractive old aunties have become this cherished.
With my illustrations, I prefer to explore the inner world of the aunties, as opposed to their outer shell. I prefer to stay with the aunties in the small moments, which they share so well”, Inge Löök explains.
Most of the adventures of the aunties that Inge Löök has drawn show what she has experienced with her neighbour in real life.



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