“Dette er et fint sted”

Victor Lind (NO)

Carl Fredriksens Transport was the code name for a covert operation to smuggle refugees from Norway to Sweden during World War II. Few people knew about the story until the artist Victor Lind took the initiative to establish the memorial park Dette er et fint sted [This is a good place] close to Carl Berners Plass in Oslo. The site he chose overlooks the market garden where the refugees waited in hiding before being transported to Sweden.

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  • Dette er et fint sted, . Photographer: Alette Schei Rørvik
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About the project

About the project

“Dette er et fint sted”

About the project

The refugee smuggling operation began when four Jewish brothers managed to evade the police during the mass arrests of Jewish men on 26 October 1942. The brothers sought out the market gardener Rolf A. Syversen and asked to hide on his premises. Syversen knew others who were involved in transporting refugees to Sweden, and along with former policeman Alf Tollef Pettersen, Pettersen’s wife Gerd, and Reidar Larsen, he was involved in smuggling approximately 1,000 people, of whom about half were Jewish, across the border. In autumn 1943 the operation was infiltrated. Subsequently several of those involved were arrested and executed, including Syversen, who left behind a widow and a young son.

In 2008, Victor Lind initiated the creation of a memorial park close to the site of Rolf Syversen’s market garden. Dette er et fint sted [This is a good place] lies between Hasleveien and Hekkveien in Oslo and was created in collaboration with the architecture and design firm Snøhetta. A path edged with steel winds up to the highest point in the park, which has views over the whole city, including the site of Syversen’s market garden. A stargazing telescope has been installed at this viewpoint, and a stone eight-pointed star has been placed within a grove of cherry trees. An extract from Jøden [The Jew] by Henrik Wergeland, dating from 1842, is inscribed in the stone. This collection of poems was Wergeland’s contribution to the campaign to allow Jews to reside in Norway. Another eight-pointed star bears an inscription about the refugee smuggling operation and those who were involved. On the neighbouring street of Sukkertoppveien, a star is set into the pavement outside the Church of the Latter Day Saints. This star bears the inscription Her lå Syversens gartneri [Here lay Syversen’s market garden]. What was previously an overgrown rocky outcrop has become a place to reflect over the rescue operation, as well as a means of increasing public understanding of the events of World War II. Earlier works by Lind have commemorated the deportation of Norwegian Jews, and have addressed in particular the issues of guilt and responsibility. Dette er et fint sted honours the stories of ordinary people who refused to betray their fellow Norwegians, instead putting their own lives in peril to help others in need.

Publikasjon

Publikasjon

Facts

Facts

Address

The park is situated between Hasleveien and Hekkveien, close to Carl Berners plass in Oslo

Artist
Date completed

31.10.2013

Producer (URO)

Bo Krister Wallström
KORO (URO)

Project partner

Oslo kommune
Sparebankstiftelsen DNBNOR
Stiftelsen Wergelandsdagen
Jødisk Museum Oslo
Det Mosaiske Trossamfund i Oslo

Stenhugger

Johansens Monumenthuggeri

Entreprenør

AGRO Anleggsgartnerservice AS

Landscape Architect

Snøhetta

Project manager

Per Bj. Boym

Duration

Permanent

Accessibility

Accessible by the public

Program

Art scheme for outdoor public spaces (URO)

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