Artists: Sasha Azanova, Iris Bengtsson, Malin Arnedotter Bengtsson, Trude Berg, Charlotte Besuijen, Marte Dahl, Jason Dunne, Lars Morten Elstad Rehnlund, Matias Grøttum, Runa Halleraker, Eleni Ieremia, Simone Jarvis, Ji Jia, Siavash Kheirkhah, Håvard Kranstad, Fredrik Landevåg, Kari Ann Lending Kleiveland, Solveig Lien Granberg, Jara Marken, Oda Monslaup Ese, Sonja Ovaskainen, Hanna Pherson, Renate Prokopcika, Peppi Reenkola, Selina Rosenborg, Julie Schie Olsen, Al Spence
Each spring, Bergen Kunsthall hosts the graduation exhibition with students from the Master’s Programme in Fine Art at UiB’s Faculty of Art, Music and Design (KMD). This year, twenty-seven artists from eleven countries present their work in Picnic, a large-scale exhibition spanning the institution and its adjacent public gardens, curated by Randi Grov Berger.
The unusual circumstances under which these young art students were educated cannot go unacknowledged. The tremendous impact of the pandemic is palpable in Picnic, which represents an important moment for an emerging generation of artists to share their works publicly, united and unmuted. Demonstrating great innovation and resilience, the exhibition showcases a wide range of media, techniques, and materials, whilst contributing to a multitude of topics central to current artistic discourse.
The sudden and reoccurring disruptions that punctuated the last two years have prompted profound doubt and unease with the systems that structure and control our daily lives, and the dependence of these systems on material and capital flows within an increasingly accelerated and unbalanced global economy. A number of the works on display confront such systems, while others question the contemporary role of the artist. Several projects reveal haunting memories and personal journeys. A deep concern for our natural environment and future is foregrounded in other works, triggering the senses whilst probing issues of identity and belonging.
These insights and observations are generously shared through immersive installations, large-scale paintings, sculptural objects, instructional texts, videos, photographs, sound works, readings, performances, therapeutic sessions, ephemeral gestures in public space, inventive applications of craft traditions, and, in one case, a musical.
The yearly graduation exhibition marks the transition between art education and professional practice. Picnic celebrates the transition as well from winter to spring. Come spring, we can yet again improvise excursions off the beaten path, momentarily abandoning civilisation to enjoy a spontaneous, open-air feast. We prepare for the ever-changing weather, and for nature’s surprises. Presenting works that are bold, risk-taking, delicate, and vulnerable, this year’s graduates suggest a breaking away from the formal whilst adopting the picnic’s collective spirit.
Fri 8 Apr 20:00 Free
Please join us for the opening night as we celebrate the achievements of our graduating MA students.
Thu 5 May 5 10:00 Free
To “picnic” is to converge informally, to enjoy company, conversation, food, and fresh air. As per picnic etiquette, each guest participates by bringing something to the occasion. For this year’s graduate seminar, we pack for an eventful day. Beginning with a swim at Nordnes sjøbad, we continue with a full day of activities led by our hostess, Emma Fended from House of Friele.
The program includes artist talks by Marco Bruzzone and Marthe Elise Stramrud, and a lecture exploring the picnic through an art historical lens by the formidable Gunnar Danbolt. We invite you to bring your own blanket for a picnic served under the Japanese cherry trees at Lille Lungegårdsvannet. There will be performances, music, a catalogue launch, and a commencement speech by artist David Horvitz. The day concludes with a critic’s circle and cocktails. Sign up to join the (free!) adventure!