Sunday, 8 June 2014

Gollum and the Sparrows

2014-06-08 Ramnaparken, Norrby

In a park I’m not sure I ever visited before, I came across this Gollum-like creature today. It’s called Viskarn ~ “The Whisperer” ~ and was created by by Swedish artist Christian Partos in 1999.



I just had to check the dates when I got home. Please note: The Lord of the Rings’ promotional trailer was first released on 27 April 2000…

Well, we always wanted to be Avantgarde here in Borås!

By the way, the river flowing through town is called Viskan (without the ‘r’). Was the sculpture given its name on purpose or by coincidence? I have no idea!

Anyway, the birds seem unconcerned about all that stuff. They regard the fountain as their bath tub, and never mind the creepy creature watching them.



I think these must be Eurasian Tree Sparrows (Passer Montanus) (Swedish: pilfink) rather than common sparrows, because of their brown heads.


  1. To me your Viskarn looks quite cat-like. Friendly. The water and the whispering are a good match.
    I thought Tolkien got his ideas from European myths and legends and simply embroidered them to make his stories. Tolkien did drawings of his characters at various times and the Jackson film version is an approximation, changed to suit the potential cinema audience. Certainly the film character is not very like the Gollum in the books. The first film version of Gollum is in 1977, and he is a frog-like creature in an animated film by Rankin and Bass.

    1. What struck me was the body and position of the creature compared to that film image, Louise. But also the name of the sculpture as Gollum's voice was described as whispering and hissing. Compare quote from The Hobbit that I added in a separate comment below.

  2. Well you can sure seen the similarity with Lord of the Rings. Very interesting post.

  3. They have made him look a little less creepy than the original, anyway!

  4. "Deep down here by the river lived old Gollum, a small slimy creature. I don't know where he came from, nor who or what he was. He was Gollum - as dark as darkness, except for two big round pale eyes in his thin face. He had a little boat --- He paddled it with large feet hanging over the side, but never a ripple did he make. Not he. He was looking out of his pale limp-like eyes for blind fish, which he grabbed with his long fingers as quick as thinking." [From The Hobbit - first published in 1937] His speech is also described as whispering and hissing (and the name gollum imitating "a horrible swallowing noise in his throat"). - I think it was not until in The Lord of the Rings trilogy that Tolkien added a bit more about Gollum's background (real name Sméagol and a kind of hobbit).

  5. Gollum has always creeped me out, in ways the scariest creature I've ever seen. Had nighmares after first seeing him.

  6. Thank goodness the sparrows aren't grossed out by the Gollum statue.

  7. Every time I read this post I get sidetracked. Yesterday it was to try and recall the name of Doddy whose name isn't Doddy and I knew that but I couldn't remember what it was. Dobby it is. Of course by the time I'd done that I'd got caught up in other things and didn't do any more blog reading. Until this morning. Now, in fact. I was going to draw some likeness to Gollum and Dobby. And now to Viskarn. They are all rather creepy in my book.


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