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Ragna Bley and Kim Hiorthøy at Kunstnernes Hus

June 3–August 7, 2022
Opening: June 3, 7–10pm, performance by Natalie Price Hafslund and DJ set by André Bratten

It is with great pleasure that we welcome you to this year’s summer exhibitions presenting two Scandinavian artists in our skylight halls, Ragna Bley with Stranger’s Eye and Kim Hiorthøy with Hole in the Wall.

Ragna Bley: Stranger’s Eye
Ragna Bley’s artistic work is characterized by an experimental and nuanced use of materials, colours and references. Her solo exhibition is presented in collaboration with Malmö Konsthall, where several of the works have been shown previously. At Kunstnernes Hus, the works appear in new constellations and in dialogue with completely new works.

Bley’s monumental paintings testify to a dynamic and sometimes uncontrollable painting process, a kind of colouring or staining of the canvas. The paint seems to follow its own paths and forms fluid transitions to tighter graphic parts in the borderland between imagination and abstraction. At Kunstnernes Hus, the artist presents an installation of monumental paintings that hang on joints in steel wires through one of the skylight halls. The tight, diagonal axis contrasts with the meandering and organic shapes that characterize the paintings.

The paired procession of paintings shows two different series of works back-to-back; soft cotton canvas against hard PVC canvas, transparent acrylic paint against mirror-gloss enamel paint. The installation invites the viewer to a walk around the room, with changing perspectives of closeness and distance, spaciousness and intimacy. The exhibition as a whole is characterized by an aquatic atmosphere that resonates in Kunstnernes Hus’ characteristic skylight hall, which with its high vault and sparkling light is reminiscent of a life under water.

The exhibition is followed by a publication in the series Minigraphs which contains a conversation between Ragna Bley and artist and critic Ragnhild Aamås.

About the artist
Ragna Bley (b. 1986, Sweden) works with painting, sculpture, text and performance. She lives in Oslo and has a BA from the Academy of Fine Arts in Oslo (2011) and an MA from the Royal College of Art in London (2015). In addition to Malmö Konsthall, Bley has had solo exhibitions at Kunsthall Oslo – Munchmuseet on the Move, OSL contemporary, Kunsthuset Kabuso and Downs & Ross in New York. She is currently working on her first solo exhibition for Pilar Corrias Gallery in London.

Kim Hiorthøy: Hole in the Wall
Kim Hiorthøy has a broad interdisciplinary approach to artistic work and is active as a visual artist, choreographer, photographer, graphic designer, author and filmmaker. For his solo exhibition, he has created a site-specific installation consisting of free-standing structures that the public can both move through and climb on. It is a work that encourages exploration, where the audience’s way of moving in and around the work also facilitates a new experience of Kunstnernes Hus’ architecture. The structures contain the artist’s own drawings, and invite visitors to experience a space that is simultaneously present and imaginary.

The exhibition is followed by a publication that contains a conversation between Kim Hiorthøy and filmmaker and author Dag Johan Haugerud.

About the artist
Kim Hiorthøy (b. 1973, Norway) graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Trondheim, the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, the School of Visual Arts in New York and The School of Dance and Circus in Stockholm. He has a longstanding career as a graphic designer and illustrator, in addition to having worked with music, text, performance and film. In 2017, he made the feature film The Rules for Everything, which was screened in Norwegian cinemas. In 2019, he published the book Ferdig omslag kommer snart (Finished Cover Coming Soon), a collection of his design and illustration works from 1994-2019. In August 2022, his new book Knivtid (Knife time) will be published by Forlaget Oktober.

Previous exhibitions include Bergen Kunsthall, 14th Vilnius Painting Triennial, Nederlands Instituut voor Mediakunst, Amsterdam, Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh, Bristol’s City Museum and Art Gallery, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art and New Jerseyy, Basel.

Kunstnernes Hus
Wergelandsveien 17
0167 Oslo
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 11am–5pm,
Thursday 11am–7pm

[email protected]
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