Per Einbu

By Alastair Brown


    Per Einbu was born in 1918 in Lesja kommune in the northern part of Oppland County.  His parents were Berta and Ragnvald Einbu.  Ragnvald was a well known painter and sculptor (in wood) and there are about 20 churches (especially altars) which he decorated and restored.  He also decorated many schools and meeting halls and worked for years at the famous open-air museum Maihaugen in Lillehammer.

    In 1936-37 Per studied craftsmanship at Gudbrandsdal High School and then at Hjerleid handicrafts school.  The war interrupted his education but in 1945-46 we find Per in Oslo at the Bjarne Engebret art school.

    From 1946-56 Per taught art at Hjerleid handicrafts school.  He was also an active wood sculptor/carver and amongst his many works are the seats and benches at the well known Dovregubbens Hall in the Dovre mountains.  He contributed to the establishment of the museum at Lesja.

    In 1960 Per and his wife Agnes moved to Søndre Land.  For 24 years he was a supervisor at the Hov furniture factory.  Per has continued to be very productive as a pensioner and his carvings, drawings and paintings are eagerly sought.  He has illustrated many books through the years.  Per is a loyal supporter of Lands Museum.  Our postcards, our publications, a huge model of a logging dam and surroundings in Torpa, the wall paintings in our bear exhibition and illustrations for our planned open-air theater are just a few of the things that we have to thank Per for.  We are, of course, also very excited about the carving he is going to make for Ann Edwards!

    In December 1997, at the annual “Christmas in Søndre Land” festival, Lands Museum presented a selection of some of his works in a very successful exhibition which we simply called, “Per Einbu—A Versatile Artist in Land.”

    Per’s son Ragnvald has inherited his father’s artistic versatility in that he too paints and carves.  Both Hov and Lunde churches in Land have decorations by Ragnvald and he painted in Peder Aadnes style when he decorated Tingbygningen at Lands Museum.




Per Einbu’s Speech at the unveiling of the relief

translated into English by Alastair Brown


           I was both proud and glad to make this relief.  It will not only be the largest work that I have produced but also the most challenging.  Suggestions were sent back and forth across the Atlantic to Ann Edwards and finally I was able to begin.            

    From the 500kl pine block figures and landscape were sketched.  One would have to take 3 steps back to study it and then 3 steps forward to continue the work.  Everything went surprisingly well and quicker than I had expected.  As the work progressed, photos were sent to Ann Edwards to keep her informed as to developments.             

    I hope I have managed to express the sorrow that people had about leaving their homes, their families and their neighborhood.  And at the same time the expectations people had about what would meet them in the new world with the hard work and the sorrow but also the expectations of being able to create a new future in a new world.  Perhaps the letters sent from America had promised too much, people didn’t know.             

    I would also like to thank Ann Edwards for this donation which has made it possible for me to carry out this work and that I was trusted with this important project “Minne om:  Utvandringen fra Land til  America” memorial about immigration from Land to America.






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