Martin Thönen Prints

A few Sundays ago Adam and I were out for an afternoon walk and we stumbled upon a gallery with some beautiful woodcut prints. It’s rare for shops to be open on Sunday so we were puzzled yet delighted to find an open viewing and prints for sale. Adam and I were immediately drawn to Bernese artists Martin Thönen’s organic woodcuts, many of them featuring scenes of vineyards and other landscapes.

While debating which prints to get the sweet woman organizing the open house suggested that we instead just buy a 2014 calendar, which features thirteen original prints, all signed by the artist. We really wanted four prints to fill up the space behind the couch and a quick run through the numbers suggested that this was a the most economical option. For reference, here is the space we were trying to fill:









The couch is 277 centimeters (or ~109 inches) wide and we wanted art that made a big impact, space wise. This means that the 5 Franc world map would have to go because I think it would have looked too awkward to have two large scale situations happening in the same small room. Plus, I think we always knew that map was temporary.

So, we bought the calendar of prints and planned to mat and frame them exactly as the gallery had done. I went to a local frame store and ordered four identical mats before heading to the DIY store to pick up four silver frames. I certainly didn’t go to math college so this is a rough sum, but by buying the prints in the calendar and picking up our own frames and mats I’m pretty sure we saved around 700 Francs. It’s a pretty significant savings, methinks.

On Thursday night Adam and I convened in the living room for a fun night of measuring, marking and hammering! Just kidding. I did tell him that I loved him before we even started, just to remind him that what would be said over the next hour and a half was in no way a true reflection of my feelings for him. I don’t want to go into the graphic details, but let’s just say the colorful language was no match for the unique measuring and hammering that occurred behind these pictures. I can’t really talk about the math that happened and didn’t happen because I don’t really believe in the productivity of unnecessarily reopening painful wounds. The pictures are up and that’s what really matters : )

















I think we made a good call with these prints and really like them in the space. The pillows on the couch are no longer working for me and I think I will put the black and white checked ones in our guest room and see if I feel better. I’m also thinking the shelves are fully loaded at this point and might benefit from a little editing. Although when I mentioned to my aunt that I thought this room now was carrying a lot of information she said there was no such thing as “too much information” and that “more is better…less is boring!”

We also need to figure out what will happen on the now-blank wall where the map was. I’m thinking a long horizontal mirror perhaps? Thoughts?



Something that could bounce in some light from out here:



As I think you can tell from these photos (and every other one on the blog), it’s pretty dark in here during the winter so we could use a little help brightening it up.

Also, here’s the wall opposite the couch that is still waiting for a little attention:







We have a couple new plants and cords over on stage left, all of which are thriving thankfully. I like the asymmetry of the “For Like Ever” poster and am now trying to figure out how to fill out the rest of the wall. I really like the look of the picture below but think a similar setup might compete too aggressively with its facing wall:

Gallery Wall



Oh goodness, what to do with it all. As I said on Friday (in so many words), what’s the rush? It would be great to slow down and think a little harder about it all and I’m really glad Adam and I didn’t jump at a temporary solution for above the couch because I’m very pleased with what we have now. So I suppose that could be a lesson for the rest of the apartment.

For now I turn my concerns to the guest room because my parents are coming in March for a week and it’s a disaster zone. We found a bed last week and picked it up yesterday so I’m happy to report that they will at least have something to sleep on. Here’s a sneak peek at the room:



I know, I know! What a cheap shot (pun intended). But I did take a ton of pictures of it the other day so once we flesh it out a bit more I’ll put them up in all their glory.

I’d love any feedback you have! What are you thoughts on the prints? What are you decorating in your place? Also, the light was so great last Friday because we actually saw the son for longer than 5.5 minutes and was so eager to take pictures. Looking through them I’m pretty disappointed in how they turned out–they’re so gray! Any ideas as to why that’s happening? Maybe I just need to get to know my camera and editing software better. Ugh.

(gallery wall image via Mor til MERNEE)

4 thoughts on “Martin Thönen Prints

  1. I meant off center vertically, not left to right. Although that one 2nd from the left looks slightly off center left to right as well.

    Glad you like the new lens, you can also get some good up close shots with it too as the focal length should be pretty short. Good flower pics and the like, although this isn’t the time of year for that.

    • Adam reassured me that must be what you were talking about : ) Will be looking at the 2nd from the right picture a little more closely…

      Yes, the lens is super great. My test micro-shots have come out much better than what I could do with the other lens. So, thanks so much!

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