Slama Land Art Snow Sculptures in Osijek

Total Croatia News

Updated on:

James Macdonald

The snow might prevent many things, but it also provides opportunities for creativity…

Winter well and truly unleashed its freezing wrath on the country, and with plenty of snowfall across Croatia with no exemption for Osijek, the city got hit with its fair share of the white stuff leaving many citizens complaining about the adverse weather conditions. 

However, Slama Land Art organiser Nikola Faller put the snow to good use and built some incredible snow sculptures. The location of the snow sculptures is currently in front of Tvrđa (The old city Fortress) entrance, just off of Europska Avenue. 

With the weather bringing heavy snowfall and changing to freezing rain, the wintery conditions provided sculpture artist Nikola Faller with some interesting weather to compete with.

When you first hear the words “Slama Land Art” we all tend to think about the summer months with the huge festival that takes place on the other side of the river bank. Total Croatia News was there last year and did an excellent report on it.

Total Croatia News had a chance to catch up with Nikola Faller and he was in great spirits this weekend with many news teams and web portals all following his work. The snow sculptures were incredible to see with so much attention to detail and enormous size paid, so much so that it’s difficult for the camera do the size of them justice when standing next to them.

In a brief conversation with Nikola Faller, it was interesting to find that there was a Canadian connection. His first experience of making snow sculptures was back when he submitted some designs and a few drawings to Quebec City for the “Snow Sculpting Competition”. The drawing received approval and he entered the competition, spending the next 4 to 5 days working with snow, and turning his drawings to larger than life size sculptures.

The experience he had in Canada was so positive he brought the experience back with him, all the way to Osijek. Every so often, snow arrives and provides a good opportunity for some artistic expression. He said that this past week had been a challenge, however.

On Friday night, unfortunately, one of the larger pieces of work fell over. The time it takes to build a sculpture on average is approximately four hours. The nightfall with the cold crisp dry air was the ideal time to add more details to carving the finer lines.

The Slama Land Art Facebook page has immortalised some of the cold nights in Osijek with him building the sculptures with a camera.

The cold, clear night sky highlights some of the amazingly fine details of the snow carving and etching he has worked hard on. Every bit of detail in the lines etched into the snow is displayed well well at night because there
is less reflection off the snow. It also helps to have night air as the snow quickly freezes with the crisp cold air coming in. The hardest part is when the sun hits the snow from different angles, causing the weight to shift during the day.

The tools used to carve are standard for carving into the snow.

The younger generations had a chance to hang out with him and learn some of the techniques and ask questions. Everyone seemed to enjoy the gigantic works of snow art with many people taking the time to stop by and take a few pictures.

It brought great cheer to people living or visiting Osijek, as a chance to see these incredible sculptures done by such talented hands is a rarity. With reports of the weather gradually getting warmer, the sculptures won’t last long.

Snow or no snow, throughout the year, the Slama Land Art organisation creates incredible sculptures. to see more of the fantastic work, click here.


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