Assuming Covid restrictions have lifted in a year’s time, the latest addition to Oslo’s thriving arts scene will be welcoming international and local visitors alike from 11th June 2022.
Members of the public able to make it to new National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design this year, however, will be offered a free-of-charge snoop around the harbourside venue as the finishing touches are made to the Kleihues + Schuwerk-designed building.
“We are inviting visitors to join us and have a look inside while the art is being mounted and the museum is taking shape”, explains Karin Hindsbo, the museum’s director.
Prebooked guided tours will begin as soon as local pandemic protocols permit, gifting the public a first look at certain exhibition rooms and a close-up inspection of the structure’s Norwegian slate-clad exterior.
The venue will display more than 5,000 works on behalf of the Norwegian people – a fraction of the 400,000 objects held in its vast collection – ranging from centuries old paintings to recently acquired contemporary installations. These items will be displayed over two floors, subdivided into almost 90 individual rooms.
Edvard Munch and his renowned work The Scream will be the subject of one room, with others focussing on niche topics such as royal gowns worn by Norway’s two queens and the works of Norwegian architect Sverre Fehn.
Aside from housing a plethora of permanent exhibitions, the new structure features a space dedicated to temporary shows – the striking rooftop Light Hall – as well as a large open-air roof terrace, cafés, a shop and the largest art library in the Nordic region.
The museum, which has been designed with the target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% compared to current building standards, will open next summer with an exhibition exploring Norwegian contemporary art through the works of almost 150 artists.
The full programme for the opening year will be announced later in 2021.