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Wall of Fame: Marianne Heske

2016
From 01.03
To 30.04

Marianne Heske (1946-) is best known for Project Gjerdeløa, in which she moved a small house from the countryside of Tafjord to the Pompidou Centre in Paris and back again. The precise photographs of the event are virtually iconic.

Throughout the 1970s Marianne Heske produced conceptual works, sometimes with doll heads, which long were her trademark. But in 1980, after she moved back home to Norway from stays in Paris, London, and Maastricht, she carried out Project Gjerdeløa, which has had the status as one of her major works and one of the most important action-based projects in Norwegian art history. The bases of this prestige lie both in the work's character and its broad international and national acceptance, first at the Paris Biennial, then at the Henie Onstad Art Centre outside Oslo.

Marianne Heske, Project Gjerdeløa Tafjord-Paris, 1980. Silver gelatin copy. Property of Preus museum collections.

A farm building in Paris

Project Gjerdeløa involved moving a small farm building from the countryside of Tafjord to the Pompidou Centre in Paris and back to Tafjord. This was in accordance with Heske's way of visualizing the cultural and artistic oppositions between the setting of her home circumstances and the international milieu in Paris.

Marianne Heske, Project Gjerdeløa Tafjord-Paris, 1980. Silver gelatin copy. Property of Preus museum collections.

In the exhibition the audience received a sheet of paper with a sequence consisting of 12 photographs on one side and the artist's commentary about the work on the other: «The project represents a reversing of the typical model of cultural tendencies, from the center to the periphery. The theme here is: From a territory in the Tafjord mountains to the cultural territory of Central Europe.»

Marianne Heske, Project Gjerdeløa Tafjord-Paris, 1980. Silver gelatin copy. Property of Preus museum collections.

A symbol of differences

Consonant with the artist's intentions, Project Gjerdeløa has remained a symbol of the difference between the peripheral Norwegian artistic milieu and the international art scene. One reason is the deliberate photographic strategy the artist followed: close observation of the dismantling work, the transport through the western Norwegian fjord landscape, and the reassembly in the hypermodern Pompidou Centre with its white walls and its exposed piping in the roof. 

Marianne Heske, Project Gjerdeløa Tafjord-Paris, 1980. Silver gelatin copy. Property of Preus museum collections.

The photographs of all this are precise, virtually iconic, and contribute to establishing the work's

symbolic meaning.

The photographs were bought by the museum in connection with the exhibition "Kunsten å falle/The Art of Falling" in 2009.

 

Wall of Fame: Marianne Heske

Marianne Heske, Project Gjerdeløa Tafjord-Paris, 1980. Silver gelatin. Preus museum's collection.