Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Drums in viking age scandinavia?


This Hammer- shaped instrument is a ca. 1000 years old drumstick of the Sami- people, scandinavia s indigenous population.
Weirdly enough it was found in Rendal, Hedmark, wich is norvegian coreland, far south of the first norse capital, Nidaros.
Woven patterns are not rare in sami art, but here we can see the so called Ringerike-style, a very clear sign of "viking" influence.
It implies together with more historical and archaeological material that sami and norse culture was interwoven and the to the circumpolar group counting Sami people lived quite far south among the norsemen.
We find skeletons with  Sami genetic markers in rich Viking graves.
Some graves also contain females with weapons and people of arabian origin, buried with all honors in scandinavian soil a thousand years ago. (Read newer studies of the Birka graves, Oseberg grave and the works of Neil S. Price )

A norvegian word for the Sami drum is "Runebømme" (Rune-drum) hinting at the rune-like symbols on the drums.

Ibn Fadlan unmistakable writes that the norsemen put a drum in a temporary grave with a dead man: "...they took out the dead man...I saw that he had turned black because of the coldness of the land. They had put nabidh (arabian for fermented fruit drink) in the tomb with him and fruit and a drum. They took all this out..."

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Nordic Deer Tattoo


Shamanism basics

The word "shaman" entered our modern languages from the Evenki people/ Siberia.
In their language it describes a person who is excited or in ecstacy.
Asked after a job description, Evenki shamans describe it as "keeping the balance between the visible and invisible worlds."
A shaman is someone in a permanent ecstatic condition with special techniques and tools to send his soul on a journey to get in contact with the supernatural. Not more, no enlightment, no perfect role model, no priest, no Übermensch...

It is not a position, people desire to have, the traditional shamans often live a regular, sometimes poor life, being off duty relatively
normal or even troubled people, consumed by their work. They are very often feared and if possible, avoided. It is a little bit like the fire department: you re happy to see them if you need them, but even more when not.
They inherit their destiny from their grandparents mostly and we can probably very well imagine how popular a long, painful path as a complete weirdo in service of all people and spirits in today s modernizing society is...


Naran Bö, Evenki shaman, picture taken 1931



Shamanism is clearly not a religion by itself, more a development or blossom of animism, meaning a mindset, that all existence is interwoven with spirits or intelligences.
Markings of a shaman are f.ex., that he or she possesses no individual power, all power comes from the spirits. The shamans special ability though is to control or ride these.
Is the person controlled by spirits, we call it a medium.
Also plant medicine is not necessary a part of traditional shamanism, here lies the difference to the medicine man.



drawing of Evenki shaman 18th century



Shamans usually are recruited from among the little special, but intelligent members of the society/ tribe. People who are in balance with themselves and the world.
If that is not the case, the shaman will become evil and only interested in him or herself.

Safe travels

Kai
Heilung "LIFA" is out!
The recording of our very first ritual performance at Castlefest, Holland in 2017






Farewell Uffe!

Winter is coming and Uffe walked out there all by himself....:)
After an interesting and challenging time Uffe decided to walk his own path and leave Kunsten på Kroppen.
Uffe always contributed enthusiastic to the work climate and worked intensively on expanding his area of responsibility.
He put big effort in upgrading his craftmanship and quality during the time with us.
His contribution to Kunsten på Kroppen will be missed and we wish him a safe and comfortable onward journey.
Please check the net to see his work and contact him.
Tak for alt.
Kai

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

HEILUNG- Ofnir, the album!

Ofnir CD/artbook coming out May 10th, the pre sales started already!
The book is 17 x17 cm and 161 pages, containig pictures taken and drawn by Kai Uwe Faust, also contributions from Christina Henrich and Kristian Krystoviak, masterfully edited by Christopher Juul.
Apart from the audible sensations that Kai, Maria Franz and Christopher Juul created, HEILUNG aimed to compliment the opus with matching visuals, wich craved sometimes big sacrifices.
Kai designed custom fonds especially for the book, also a yet unseen rune fond, based on ancient writings...
The traditional nordic tattoo art of Kai is very visible in the book, unpublished designs go along with re interpretations of bronze age and iron age motives and the chilling, provokative graphics, that can be seen animated at the HEILUNG Krigsgaldr Video here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7ZqZVunCb4
The CD will be beautifully mounted in a special case in the book.
And of course it will contain the lyrics to our sound and also explanations and historical/ spiritual background informations. It gives a little glimpse into Nordic Shamanism and Rune Science.
HEILUNG will choose nine people, that pre order the Ofnir Album. We will send the album signed to the chosen ones, containing a patch and a piece of jewelry, designed by Kai and produced by Viking Kristall/Sweden.






Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Heilung Krigsgaldr - the video



On the 4th of January The first music video of HEILUNG will be published.
Watch, drool and wait impatiently...:)

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Kunsten på Kroppen - the video

In cooperation with Linus Mørk and Anders Graver / Humbug Film we created this nice video wich will come up soon.
Enjoy the teaser for now:



Friday, May 27, 2016

Faroe Islands: The other side

Before the european and scandinavian tribes embraced Christianity, they lived in a world filled with spirits, giants, elves and uncountable other mystical creatures.
They experienced these beings as real and graspable as we today experience electricity, the internet and the phenomenon, that the earth cicles around the sun and not the other way around.
Just imagine, someone tries to convince you, that electricity doesn´t exist, because one can´t see it...
Our forefathers had no Hippie- everyone- loves- everyone- peace- and- harmony approach to the world.
Nature and its spirits could be hostile and dangerous, spiritual warfare was a common concept.
Christianity- apart from ending the bloodfeuds also provided a powerful tool to ban and bound the fear triggering beings, that lived in the shadows and the twilight...




Sometimes you open a door and there he still is, the master of the runes, first of all Seidhmen...


 ...when you set your foot in the paths, walked by men since a thousand years in twilight...


...suddently the rocks show their true face..


...and just because no one watches anymore, doesn´t mean, the Huldrefolk stopped dancing.


Why is it still important for so many people to nail animal skulls on their houses?
Do they more or less subconciously ask for protection or the death of their enemies as their forefathers did for thousands of years or is it just decoration?


And the witch, frozen to stone when kissed by the first beams of the raising sun, stands forever in the ice cold sea.
No one wants to forget her story...

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The tree...



Your personal tree of life doesn´t have to be an ash, it can be any tree you favour...

Galdraristning


A very special weekend with good people on a magic place making old style magical tattoos.
Here you see the lead singer of L.E.A.F.
We did a song together:


Where you find runes:
...
On Bragis tongue...sleipnirs hoofs...the owls beak...nail of the norn...hand of the healer...

(free interpretation)



The lead singer of FAUN, check out an amazing version of Egillssaga, a classic :



We started with a ceremony on a crisp, cold morning and finished in warm sunshine...



During the tattoo process, ancient and new songs were sung...



The ravens on the shoulders were described before and also here I m not giving away the very personal meanings of the Bindrunes and Galdrs.
There s many reasons why people wish to have the ancient symbols on their skin.
A wish for love, protection, health or generally power might be the intension.
And sometimes it s just beautiful.

The gods...



Hangatyr...




She, who knows it all, but never says...

Lines and shadows


Handmade straight line, following the main meridian




Mind and memory



Panther and ram fighting, a classic eastern iron age topic in a nordic interpretation.
The Buddha and right shoulder celtic knot not my work.



The wolf and the deer, a classic celtic icon, a symbol of the balance in nature.
Lord of  nature and kells hounds not my work.

Rose


Another hybrid piece: lines are machine made, dots by hand, it contains classic slavic and nordic elements and contemporary sacred geometry

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Hats and rituals










What is the thing with the funny straps in front of the eyes?
In Siberian and Tuvan shamanism today these straps still play an important role.
It is less about hiding the face.
Apart from taking away half of the external sight, wich is for special practices and paths important, it also shelters the eyes from entering evil spirits.
In the european iron age we find clear evidence of the concepts of spirits that invade throgh all body openings.
Also it is mentioned in one of the sagas, that the Vølva asks her helper to bring the dark hood or hat with the straps, in order to perform Seidhr.
Sometimes you can see me working at public sessions with a black hat and straps covering my eyes, serving apart for ceremonial purposes also simply as blinders for the flashlight of the cameras :)

Foteviken


As so many years in the past, Kunsten på Kroppen will be also present and working at the annual festival after midsummer (1-3 July) in the Viking reservation Foteviken, Sweden

Heilung works!


Heilung is amplified history, sounds from the european iron age and viking period.
While producing the second album, we are also working on a very special first edition of our debut album.
It will be published at Arun Verlag, Germany as a Book in EP size, containing the CD and in addition to the lyrics a lot of background information to the Galdrs and songs.
We also gonna publish more pictures in it as in the iTunes booklet:

All cover artwork done by Christina, wich really puts some effort in the visual appearance of Heilung and is really a treasure to have.
Above a draft of the cover, wich will not be part of it, but it is way too beautiful to hide it.
Thank you for your work, Christina :)

Get the full digital album here:

Read more at:

Become a follower:





Girls & Animals


The Heron, a fascinating bird with big symbolism in many cultures.
Like most waterbirds, also the heron travels permanently three worlds, the world of water, air and land, wich i think is the core of the fascination for this amazingly elegant being, nesting in big colonies high up in the trees.


The crossed viper, one of the very few dangerous snakes in northern Europe.
There is a certain magical link some girls have with it...


The midgardsnake. A primal symbol, very present in contemporary nordic art.


The Ram and the deer, single and in combination also a very admired symbol.
The style here is clearly nordic, although the siberian plain tribes of the earlier iron age already favoured the horned beasts.


Here you can see a tattoo by me wich is ca 10 years old and underwent two pregnancies.
It is the darker part on the bottom.
On top is the new part, freshly made.
As usual, there s no big editing being made, so you can see the development process of a solid and bold nordic piece.


Runes...what do the runes mean?!

"...and is there one that asks you about Runes, so thou shalt fall silent..."
(free translation)

The viking valley



Some nice pictures from a good time in the viking valley Gudvangen, Norway.
Thank you, Valkyrja :)

Friday, May 13, 2016

Four tools



From top to bottom:

The first one is an antique from Burma (today Myanmar) called Khem Sak.
It was used by monks to do the Sak Yant sacred tattooing.
It was given to Kunsten på Kroppen by Travelinmick, who brought it from one of his journeys.




The second one is a tool from
Sua Sulu ape Paulo II
who was a samoan traditional master tattoo artist.
Coming from an old tattooist family he carried the mythology and craft of tattooing.
He personally handed the tool over to Kunsten på Kroppen.





The third one is an Inuit tool reconstruction, as described by Lars Krutak in his book
 "Tattoo traditions of native North America"
Below the page from the book with the reconstructions put on it.
Instead of copper I used an iron needle and i prefer my needles a bit shorter.
I used these Aivilingmiut tools for many years on the viking markeds and produced hundreds of them.
(Ingalik awl carved by David Schütze)




The fourth one was used in 2003 by Erik Reime for an experiment about tattooing in the stone age.