Jennie Bringaker, Yngve Holen, Anawana Haloba, Are Mokkelbost, Christian Tony Norum, Roman Signer, William Wegman, Kiyoshi Yamamoto and others
Opening Wednesday 29th May 7-9pm
Exhibition open 30th May-25th August
Rostockgata 2-4 0191 Oslo
How The Universe Works is an art exhibition especially for children and also adults. Kunsthall Oslo has been transformed into a space for exploration, experiment and play, and the usual art gallery rules have been suspended. We know that the appreciation of art often demands an understanding of aesthetics, politics, history; it’s about critique, or connoisseurship. But art, for adults and children, can operate in other modes too. We asked some of our favourite artists to take up the challenge of making artworks, without compromise, for a viewer who comes with an open mind and a functional imagination but who may not yet have learnt to read. The result is physical, material and sensual but also draws on older versions of art’s role as an impure interface between worlds and disciplines, from ritual performance to constructivism. Free entrance, all welcome. Yes, you can touch the sculptures, but remember: Don’t Eat The Pictures.
Are Mokkelbost’s exhibition design energises the room and suggests new ways to move around the gallery; Jennie Bringaker’s strange idol has a heavy, material presence, her body stuffed with straw, her face a bronze mask, but her brood are digital, living in a parallel, virtual world; Anawana Haloba’s contribution draws on traditions from her Zambian childhood, where to get rid of certain illnesses, you would scream into a clay mortar filled with crushed herbs; Yngve Holen’s VERTICALSEAT is a section of security fence presented as a ready-made sculpture, with one small change – the permission to climb it – that undoes its original function; Christian Tony Norum exhibits paintings and also an educational video; Kiyoshi Yamamoto’s masks and silk capes bring the spirit of carnival and the spirit of Helio Oiticica together – you can admire them, or you can wear them, or you can admire people wearing them.
Alongside the new-commissioned works we present a film and video programme that includes early Super 8 films by Roman Signer (with thanks to Kunstmuseum Basel), episodes from the surreal Norwegian children’s puppet show The Repairmen, and segments made for Sesame Street by William Wegman.
How The Universe Works is part of a year-long series of projects aimed primarily at children and young people. The next project in the series, the Rostockgata Sculpture Park, will open at the end of June.