AHO Logo

Skilled Perception

Type of project
01.08.2012 -> 31.07.2016

This project has been completed

About the project

An Investigation of Public Art in the Context of the Redevelopment of Bjørvika.

This project looks into both temporary and permanent art projects produced within the context of the redevelopment of Bjørvika, in order to discuss the methods with which the art practices position themselves and form public space.

The area of the former industrial harbour Bjørvika, in Oslo, is currently redeveloped following a cultural planning strategy. As part of the policy, culture is stipulated access and funding during the construction phase and the stakeholders, Bjørvika Development A/S, have devised a public art strategy, thus committing to invest 1% of Bjørvika’s infrastructure budget into public art. Although art is clearly stated to have a value in itself, the strategy also marks area in which art is expected to contribute. Those are diversity, local identity and civic co-ownership. In other words the public art of Bjørvika is not solemnly attributed an autonomous status, but is stated a role in the urban redevelopment of Bjørvika closely linked to other professions attempts to reintegrate the former harbor into the urban fabric of Oslo. Art is here less formulated as a mean to embellish the city, but rather a practice that can activate social spaces.  However, many of the artists involved represent art practices working from a social and/or political basis and are themselves critical to autonomy, searching for art’s usefulness in a social context.

The project is structured in themes that connect to different art practices and how their work and methods is intersecting on issues that are of concern in the larger pluralistic context of the urban redevelopment. The project is structured as an article based thesis, the first published article discusses the construction of an image for Bjørvika in relation to Marianne Heier’s “A drop in the Ocean” (2005), and the second, in process, discusses the Flatbread Society in relation to the context of reintegration of Loallmenningen into the urban fabric of Oslo.