Main Building

Back to Basics

This year's exhibition is called Back to Basics and is an examination of the mandate which is at the very heart of the Kunstlaboratoriet: to bring together contemporary art and its public.


In Back to Basics the point of departure is our belief that art is not first and foremost material objects, but places where reality is subjected to examination. To find out how these 'art places' function, Back to Basics turns the spotlight on the various actors involved in filling them with meaning – the artist, the art worker, and the public.


It is the artists who are the fulcrum of each "art place", since they not only investigate reality, but also create new expressions of what they have investigated. Investigation is the modus operandi of the artist and is the lowest common denominator for all art. What is investigated, and how, is wholly up to the individual artist, and the artwork, as physical object, is the concrete evidence of the investigation having taken place.


To illuminate this process we have therefore invited seven artists to prepare solo exhibitions which will be shown simultaneously. The artist are:

Anders Eiebakke (1970/NO)

Britta Thie (1985/DE)

Sandra Mujinga (1989/NO)

Sissel Blystad (1944/NO)

Tiril Hasselknippe (1984/NO)

Lars Paalgard (1955/NO)

Bjørn Ransve (1944/NO)


Curator Mari F. Sundet introduces the project as a whole with a group exhibition on the ground floor. A book has also been published to accompany the project – the result of collaboration between the artists, the curator, and photographer/designer Nina Ansten.


Back to Basics opens its doors to the public on 10 May 2014. At the moment the public enters the exhibitions the curator is no longer the sovereign holder of an opinion about the projects filling the old factory buildings this summer. And the artists are no longer the sole arbiters of what defines the content of their artworks. It is also at this moment that the art arena's potential to produce meaning is fulfilled. Just as the artist and the curator have their spaces in Back to Basics, so too does the public: the Inforeactor. This is an information point where artists and curator will provide visitors with further information about thought processes and work methods, and about the exhibition itself or production of the book. The Inforeactor will also be a space where visitors can give their reactions to individual artists' contributions, or Back to Basics as a whole. A PC has been made available for visitors, where they can write their comments; these will be published on our webpage as long as the exhibition is open. Visitors are also offered a visual way to react to the exhibitions, and contributions will be presented as part of a large exhibition on the theme of art mediation next year. The Inforeactor is a room which both initiates and sums up Back to Basics as an art arena: a place where meaning comes into being.




Installation photos: Vegard Kleven