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‘Reinfeldt could score voter coup with chest-piece tattoo’

An out of work artist from Gävle in eastern Sweden has a novel suggestion for Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt to help him overcome any perceived lack of support among the country’s young people.

'Reinfeldt could score voter coup with chest-piece tattoo'

“He’s in need of a renewal,” 22-year-old Sebastian Norde told The Local.

Norde, who has been unemployed since completing an art studies programme last spring, has a keen interest in tattoo art.

In December, the aspiring artist sent a hand written letter to Reinfeldt, accompanied by the sketch of a tattoo designed by Norde.

“Hi Fredrik,” begins the letter.

“I’ve been reading in the newspapers that you’ve been losing votes lately and I think I know how you can win more confidence and popularity among younger voters.”

The solution, according to Norde, is a tattoo featuring an “an old-school American” design. The tattoo includes a Viking-style ship and a horseshoe over of a shield of fire. Underneath the emblem is an inscription reading “Filippa”, referring to Reinfeldt’s wife, herself also a prominent politician.

“I think it would work well as a chest piece,” the letter continues.

If Reinfeldt decides to take Norde up on his offer, the prime minister would be guaranteed to achieve what would be a remarkable political conversion of at least one younger voter to his centre-right Moderate Party.

“If he got the tattoo, I’d vote for him for sure,” said Norde, who normally supports Sweden’s left-leaning Green Party.

Having endured about 10 months without success finding a job, Norde had little to say about Reinfeldt’s current employment policies.

But he did have one idea for the government to consider.

“They could give me state handouts to send tattoo designs to high ranking public officials. That would be pretty cool,” he said.

Norde still isn’t sure what the prime minister’s reaction to the tattoo proposal has been.

“I haven’t got an answer yet, but I’m waiting,” he said.

Markus Nordström, a spokesperson from the prime minister’s office, said he was impressed by the tattoo design.

“It was a creative idea; the painting was like a work of art,” he said.

“While the prime minister thinks it is important to reach out to young people, he has no plans to get a tattoo.”

Sebastian Norde said his tattoo to Reinfeldt is only the first of many he plans to send to several Swedish celebrities in the coming months.

Next on the list is either fashion photographer Bingo Rimér or show jumping star Malin Baryard-Johnsson.

“They’re both people I just think would like a tattoo,” said Norde.

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Swedish police remove sculpture mistaken for suicide victim

Police on the island of Gotland removed a public sculpture from the Galgberget nature reserve near Visby on the grounds that it is just too creepy.

Swedish police remove sculpture mistaken for suicide victim
The gallows at Galgeberget. Photo: Artifex/WikiCommons
According to local news site Hela Gotland, someone was out for a stroll on Galgeberget (the Gallows Hill) on Wednesday when they saw what they thought was a body hanging after a suicide. Local police were contacted but when they went to investigate they instead found a sculpture by artist Jessica Lundeberg. 
 
The artwork, entitled ‘The Watcher in the Woods’, is a partially transparent plate sculpture that looks like a spooky little girl. 
 
 
Despite discovering that the suspected suicide victim was actually artwork, police determined that Lundeberg’s piece could scare others and thus took the sculpture down. 
 
“It was decided that if it were to remain, more people would likely be frightened in the same way,” Gotland police spokesman Ayman Aboulaich told Radio P4 Gotland. 
 
Lundeberg told Hela Gotland that the sculpture has been at Galgeberget since a public art project last summer and that this was the first time it had caused any concern. She said ‘The Watcher in the Woods’ was the only piece that was allowed to remain after the end of the project. But now it is there no more. 
 
 
Lundeberg has taken the sculpture back to her studio. While she hopes it will eventually return to Galgeberget, the artist told Hela Gotland it seems unlikely.  
 
She said that the sculpture was damaged by police. 
 
“It was ragged, dismantled and broken. I was horrified when I saw it,” she said. 
 
Police have reportedly promised to pay any necessary repair costs.
 
Although the person who reported the sculpture to the police has not spoken with the media, their jump to conclusions could perhaps be attributed to the nature reserve’s macabre history. Galgeberget is still home to gallows that were used to hang criminals for centuries. The last execution to be held at the site was in 1845, according to Hela Gotland
 
 
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