My favorite old barn

Every day I pass by this small farm. Since it is abandoned I don’t know the future for these buildings, but especially the barn is very beautiful. A bit marked by times passed, but it has all the character of old barns from this district of Norway. That is, it is red of course. It has the white decorations, and it has a blue door. It is all very typical, and I think it looks lovely, but these buildings are vanishing. Some of the farms are abandoned, the rest are getting bigger. And they build new barns, that is, not barns at all, more like any type of industry building. I will not show any pictures of these new farm buildings. I guess you know what I mean. Buildings that are big, practical but without any soul.

But if you travel through Norway you still see some of the old barns and farmhouses. They might have different colours in different parts of the country. Many places they are brown, some places dark yellow, and in the middle of Norway they are red. And they are all made of timber and wood. Some are falling down, but luckily some are well maintained, like this farm in the mountain valley of Oppdal.



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65 thoughts on “My favorite old barn

  1. The world over….it seems these old barns and buildings represent character and tell us so much of who we are and the history we share…I love these photographs…and knowing at least some of these old buildings are being cared for….Thanks for sharing these beautiful shots!

  2. Red barns are typical in this area of New York and this reminds me of some we have here. I’ve never seen any with the dark buildings in the bottom photo, but it is such a great shot.

  3. We have old barns much like yours in our area, too. Quite a few are still in use. Our library did a series of old barn photos for a fund raising calendar for several years. It was quite a success. I find it fascinating that they have such appeal.

  4. Alberta had a lot of red barns too – a staple of prairie life, but also fast disappearing – or collapsing like this one which is about a 5 minute drive outside the city. I really like the ones with the rounded roofs but they’re a lot harder to find. More this shape, but red.

    • Interesting photos, Suzan. The big red barn is very similar to norwegian barn. Sorry it is falling down. The one with the rounded roof looks more like the swedish way to build.

  5. Great piece, Bente. We also have many century old barns here in the Midwestern United States that are falling into disrepair and being claimed by the hands of time. We are losing them by the hundreds, and as you perfectly put it, those which replace them don’t have the same soul. Red is also easily the most common color here, with some whites and browns as well… but what is the story behind the blue doors?

    • I see in some blogs that there are parallell storyes about old barns decaying in the USA/Midwest. Some of these barns might have been build by emigrating scandinavians by the way. The blue doors, I have heard different explenations. One is that the blue colour was once the most expensive, so with a blue door you could show you hade some wealth.. There is not much about this on the net, except this article:

  6. Ho visitato la Norvegia ed ho molto amato i suoi paesaggi incontaminati. La presenza disseminata di queste costruzioni (farms) con i loro colori e nella loro decadenza, costituiscono un momento meraviglioso di interazione dell’uomo con la natura.
    Complimenti per le foto. Sono veramente per tutti noi un viaggio nel mondo reale

    • I (google) translate: “I visited Norway and I loved its unspoilt landscapes. The presence of these scattered buildings (farms) with their colors and their decay, are a wonderful moment of human interaction with nature.
      Congratulations for the pictures. It is truly a journey for all of us in the real world”. Grazie per il commento, Lois.

  7. I love the old barns & buildings also.
    Being red, they must be easier to see in the winter snows.
    I love the path cut through the tall grass in the first photo. It would be wonderful to see the wild flowers & meadows in the uncut area as you walk up to the barn or house.
    Thanks for sharing these wonderful old builings.

    • I don’t know why they are red around here, Victoria. Maybe it is to find the way home in a winter storm? ;) I might take some photos of the uncut meadow with wild flowers, since I do all the time, when I find the time..

  8. Beautiful post. I saw the farm in the last photo often, because I spent the last years the biggest part of my holidays in the Oppdal region. So beautiful that some old farms get rebuilt respectively get redeveloped. I love those old buildings also much more than some new. Ha en fantastisk ukestart! :)

    • You know norwegian, you know Oppdal, how interesting. Agree with you that it is possible to develop or rebuild an old farm respectfully. Anyway, I am not against new buildings, not at old. But I wish more people see the value in their old ones, and any new building should interact in a good way with building traditions and the landscape. Ha en fantastisk ukestart du også!

  9. I agree with you Bente. These old farm buildings are lovely and you’ve captured this one beautifully. The new industrial warehouse looking buildings certainly lack soul and any aesthetic.

  10. I loved it as you dear Bente, red barn and blue door…. I love these kind of old houses and farm houses… Thank you, wonderful photographs. Have a nice new week, love, nia

  11. I am a huge sucker for barns, and this is one of the most beautiful I have ever seen. The shot with the snow is particularly gorgeous! Thanks for sharing!

  12. Red is my favourite colour and the contrast with the white snow, the blue door and and sunlight in the second picture is really beautiful. I do remember seeing abandoned old barns and houses during my trip to the Wild West of the United States last year, not that well preserved but rather falling apart and yet telling stories of long forgotten times. At the moment I’m very fascinated by such old things and would love to see some close-ups of the barn, the withered texture of the wood, the broken paint, small cracks in the glass…

  13. I’m not familiar with Norway but I’d really like to visit it… its landscapes, traditions (I suppose so different from Italian ones), colors are fascinating to me… I have to plan a journey sooner or later ;-)

  14. Hello BENTE, how amazing it is to pay your blog a visit. The conversation here is usually top notch! With such weather, i don’t know if i can survive a day! Uganda is always hot with some bit of mildness occasionally…Apart from Hail Stones, i’ve never come close to anything extreme like your pictures show.

    On another note, i would like to let you know that i’ve nominated this awesome blog for the “Very Inspiring Blogger Awards”..Please follow the link and see for yourself..It deserves even much more. “

    Cheers Bente

    • Thanks a lot for your comment, Echwalu, and I guess a visit here would be a temperature chock for you. And thanks so much for your nomination. That is really a great honor, comming from a photojournalist like you, I admire your work a lot! Thanks, and thanks again.

  15. Jag blev extra förtjust i vinterbilden! Man ser hur kallt det är! Underbart vackra lador! Fina, fina detaljer. Bilder att bli glad av! Hoppas att någon tar över den lilla gården så den inte förfaller.
    Allt gott till dej!

  16. I have nominated you for the Reader Appreciation Award and hope you will accept my appreciation. If you choose not to go ahead with the award process, please feel free. It was important for me to help others find their way to your wonderful blog and my way of saying “thank you” for taking the time to share. :-)
    with love light and JOY

  17. Barns were painted red around here in New England USA because the paint was made with iron oxide producing a red color. It started that way and when newer paints were invented the color had become a tradition.

  18. Hi Bente, and thanks for the ‘Like’ on my latest post. :-)

    I may have mentioned to you before that I was a regular visitor to Norway in the 1970′s – the barn images brought back memories of your beautiful country.

  19. This post made me think of a conversation I had recently with a friend of mine who is also a photographer (he took most of the photos on my blog). We were talking about that undefinable element that makes you connect with a photo, beyond it being simply aesthetically pleasing. We both agreed it is created when the photographer is taking photos of something that they feel emotionally connected to. The choice of subject, angle, what is captured and what is hidden … It is all a story the photographer is telling their audience, about this very moment, through their unique perspective of the world. And the story you are telling in these photos is a truly beautiful one.


  20. Hi,

    Thank you for liking my post “Now where’s that…” on my blog. I hope you come back often. I love your photos. they remind me very much of a former home of mine in Vermont!

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