Over the past year Preus Museum received over 3 million Norwegian kroner for purchasing contemporary photography. The latest grant of 1 million kroner was received in January. The museum will primarily use this extraordinary funding to strengthen its collection with female photographers and artists.
Preus Museum has a strict budget and cannot normally set aside a large amount of money for purchasing photography, photographic object and books for the collection. The reason why the purchasing budget was increased so significantly is due to the economic stimulants from the state in connection with the pandemic. A total of fourteen art museums have benefited from this scheme.
- This is very gratifying, says acting director Kristin Aasbø at Preus museum. - Photography is a field that is developing and growing, and as a photographic museum it is important to strengthen our collection, as well as stimulating the environment among photographers and camera-based artists. The grant is equal to multiple years of a "normal" purchasing budget for our museum, she continues. When it comes to purchasing female artists and photographers, this is based on an investigation conducted a few years ago, showing that the number of female artists represented in a museum’s collection was 12.7 percent. It is an ongoing effort to strengthen the proportion of women in the photo museum's collection.
Purchasing works by about 30 photographers
-We have so far agreed upon the purchases of almost 200 works from about 30 different photographers / artists. This has been a labor-intensive process where gender, age and geography were elements influencing the purchasing assessment. - Our goal has always been to create a type of time capsule; showing the themes explored during specific times within the different genres of photography. Among the purchased works are documentary-, press- and commercial-photos, but the emphasis is on camera-based art and the conceptual use of photography, says Aasbø.
Vibeke Tandberg's graduation thesis
The increase of the purchasing budget gave the Preus Museum, among other things, the opportunity to secure Vibeke Tandberg's graduation assignment, "Ettermæle", which consists of ten large works. This series has been something we have wanted for a long time, and is probably in itself the biggest purchase, says Kristin Aasbø.
The plan is to include the new works in future exhibitions, both physical and digital. In total, the Preus Museum's collection of photographic works of art consists of just under 10,000 objects.
These photographers have been purchased so far:
Vilde Salhus-Rød, Bergen
Karoline Hjorth & Riita Ikonen
Vibeke Tandberg, Oslo
Verena Winkelmann, Skien
Marthe Aas, Oslo
Ulla Schildt, Oslo
Tonje Bøe-Birkeland, Bergen
Signe Marie Andersen, Oslo
Andrea Gjestvang, Oslo
Line Bøhmer Løkken, Oslo
Azar Alsharif, Bergen
Frida Orupabo, Oslo
Christine Hansen & Line Anda Dalmar, Bergen / Stavanger
Trine Hisdal, Oslo
Kirsti Van Hoegee, Bergen
Mimsy Møller, Oslo
Terje Abusdal, Oslo
Espen Gleditsch, Holmestrand
Gjert Rognli, Oslo
Morten Torgersrud, Kirkenes
Sølve Sundsbø, Oslo
Knut Egil Wang, Oslo
Stian Andersen, Oslo
Espen Rasmussen, Nesodden
Harald Henden, Oslo
In the series Eyes as Big as Plates Karoline Hjorth and Riitta Ikonen have staged elderly people with costumes that are blending into nature. As active contributors, Hjort and Ikonen's models challenge the view of a demographic group that is sadly categorized as marginalized or as a stereotypical cliché.
This picture can be seen in the exhibition Time, Place, Room at the Preus Museum. (detail of photograph)
© Verena Winkelmann, Fold Out, 2019 (detail). Preus museum collection
The body forms the basis of our experience of ourselves and the world. Winkelmann has entered into a close dialogue with various bodies and examines the extent to which the body can be represented without shame and without the viewer becoming a voyeur.