Programme Archive: 2006-14: Lectures

The Semesterplan Programme was curated by Marta Kuzma during her tenure as OCA Director between 2005 and 2013.

Lecture : 4 – 19 June 2014

Semesterplan – Spring 2014: Lectures

In Spring 2014 OCA presented Professor of cultural history Rainer Stollmann with the lecture ‘Phoenix Public Sphere. Man is no Private Being’, that investigated the work of German filmmaker Alexander Kluge. This was followed by ‘String Theory. The Aesthetic of Crafts and the Crafting of Politics. Some Commentary on the Work of Goshka Macuga, Etel Adnan, Alighiero Boetti and Hannah Ryggen’, in which art historian and curator Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev discussed the work of the above artists together with curator and writer Rike Frank.

Lecture : 24 June – 24 December 2013

Semesterplan – Autumn 2013: Lectures

In autumn 2013 OCA presented 'Fashion: the Fall of an Industry', a programme of lectures analysing the period of the 1970s in Norway, which saw a decline of employment in the textile industry. In November OCA organised a lecture in collaboration with the Oslo Architecture Triennale 2013 and its curatorial group Rotor. Titled 'Anthropocene Observatory: Empire of Calculus’, the event was organised in conjunction with the unravelling of the triennale exhibition project 'Behind the Green Door: Architecture and the Desire for Sustainability'.

Lecture : 22 February – 23 June 2013

Semesterplan – Spring 2013: Lectures

OCA opened the spring 2013 Semesterplan with the lecture 'Senghor's Philosophy and Politics of African Art' by philosopher Souleymane Bachir Diagne. This was the third and final presentation in 'On Négritude: A Series of Lectures on the Politics of Art Production in Africa’.

Lecture : 28 August – 20 December 2012

Semesterplan – Autumn 2012: Lectures

OCA opened the Autumn 2012 Semesterplan with a discussion at the Munch Studio at Ekely between ISP resident Issa Samb and curator Koyo Kouoh. This was followed by ‘The Articulation of Protest’, a programme of two lectures that looked into strategies that have emerged in recent times through actions and communication, and in dialogue or confrontation with existing legislation, with the aim to secure free circulation of information and knowledge in the face of the state's or capital's attempts to control and to commodify them. ‘On Négritude: A Series of Lectures on the Politics of Art Production in Africa’ continued the exploration of the history of artistic and cultural production in Africa, initiated during the symposium 'Condition Report', organised by Raw Material Company in Dakar in January 2012, followed by the lecture 'Poetics of the Infra-Ordinary' by Art Historian and Tate Modern Curator Elvira Dyangani Ose in spring 2012 and the discussion between Samb and Kouoh in August.

Lecture : 14 March – 30 June 2012

Semesterplan - Spring 2012: lectures

OCA opened the Spring 2012 Semesterplan with the lecture 'Poetics of the Infra-Ordinary' by Art Historian and Tate Modern Curator Elvira Dyangani Ose as part of her participation in OCA's International Visitor Programme. This lecture was the first in a series of talks and discussions OCA will host throughout 2012 relating to contemporary art, society and politics in Africa to explore dialogues initiated at 'Condition Report', a symposium organised by Raw Material Company in Dakar in January 2012.

Lecture : 21 August – 28 September 2011

Semesterplan - Autumn 2011: lectures

In the autumn of 2011 OCA presented the environmental activist and Honorary Professor at the University of Oslo Vandana Shiva in 'The Art of Living', a lecture addressing central concerns of the world at large – sustainable development and social justice, the integrity of living resources, the promotion of organic farming and fair trade. In conjunction with his International Studio Programme residency at the Munch Estate at Ekely in Oslo throughout September 2011, Sven Augustijnen screened his award-winning film Spectres, and Christoph Menke spoke about 'What is Aesthetic Freedom Today?', in a lecture hosted in cooperation with the Goethe Institut in Oslo and dOCUMENTA (13) on the occasion of the launch of the dOCUMENTA (13) notebook series 100 Notes - 100 Thoughts at the Office for Contemporary Art Norway in Oslo.

Lecture : 13 April – 23 May 2011

Semesterplan - Spring 2011: lectures

In the spring of 2011 OCA presented Franco Berardi on the current situation of Europe's education systems in 'Knowledge Against Financial Capitalism', curator and writer Charles Esche gave a lecture at the Oslo National Academy of the Arts during his stay in Oslo within the frame of OCA's International Visitor Programme, and Thomas Bayrle and Roger M. Buergel explored the poetry of teaching and learning in art in 'Of Weaving and Jellyfish'.

Lecture : 12 – 18 November 2010

Semesterplan - Autumn 2010: lectures

In the autumn of 2010, OCA presented two lectures on Pablo Picasso by art historian and author T.J. Clark, given during his participation in OCA's International Studio Programme. The first lecture addressed questions about modern art's relation to the century in which Picasso lived and worked. In the second lecture Clark discussed Picasso's painting Guernica (1937) as an archetype of 'political' art.

Seminar : 21 October 2009 – 17 April 2010

'Columns, Grottos, Niches: The Grammar of Forms' On Art Criticism, Writing, Publishing and Distribution'

'The Grammar of Forms' was a series public events, workshops and presentations that took place throughout autumn 2009 and winter 2010 at the Office for Contemporary Art Norway, with the aim to look at language, writing, criticism and publishing in relation to contemporary art, exploring its diverse modes of operation and possibilities within historical and contemporary practices. As a complement to this programme of events, OCA hosted a series of projects, including presentation of artworks and libraries of publications, further transforming OCA's public space into a place for production and exchange of discourse.

Lecture : 5 June 2009

'Sverre Fehn: A Homage' A discussion and celebration of Sverre Fehn

As a tribute to the celebrated Norwegian architect Sverre Fehn (1924-2009) known for his design of the Nordic pavilion within the Giardini in Venice, the Office for Contemporary Art Norway organised a panel discussion on Sverre Fehn's practice as an architect during the opening days of the Venice Biennale in 2009. The panel discussion started with an introduction to Fehn's work by Per Olaf Fjeld, the author of the monograph Sverre Fehn: The pattern of Thoughts on the architect's work, followed by a discussion with artist Dan Graham, architect Momoyo Kaijima (Atelier Bow-Wow, Tokyo), curator Hans Ulrich Obrist, architect Gro Bonesmo (Space Group, Oslo) and architecture theorist Marco De Michelis.

Lecture : 29 May 2009

Anawana Haloba in conversation with Joan Jonas

On the occasion of Anawana Haloba and Joan Jonas's participation in 'Fare Mondi//Making Worlds…', curated by Daniel Birnbaum for the 53rd International Art Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia, the two artists met at the Faculty of Arts and Design at the IUAV University of Venice to discuss their respective artistic practices in relation to video and performance art. The presentation was accompanied by visual examples of the artists' performances, films and video works, in an effort to discuss a variety of artistic strategies such as the use of sound and voiceovers, and the exploration of concepts of time and memory.

Seminar : 6 – 7 March 2009

Nasreen Mohamedi: The Legacy of Indian Abstraction

The Office for Contemporary Art Norway presents 'Nasreen Mohamedi: Notes - Reflections on Indian Modernism (Part 1)', the first solo exhibition in Europe of Nasreen Mohamedi. Curated by Suman Gopinath and Grant Watson the exhibition is part of 'Reflections on Indian Modernism', a comprehensive programme of public projects and residencies organised by Gopinath and Watson for OCA and CoLab Art & Architecture, Bangalore, India. Regarded as one of the most important Indian artists of her generation, Mohamedi (1937-1990) produced, from the early 1960s to the late 1980s, paintings, drawings and photographs that constitute a key body of work within the modernist canon.

Seminar : 8 – 10 November 2007

Film as a Critical Practice

This two-day seminar and additional screening programme organised by Marta Kuzma, Director of the Office for Contemporary Art Norway, brought together artists, critics and theorists to discuss 'film as a critical practice' by looking into the political and psychoanalytic dimension of film, including individual presentations by each of the following participants. The seminar was moderated by Marta Kuzma, Pablo Lafuente, Managing Editor of the London based contemporary arts journal Afterall and Peter Osborne, Director, Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy, Middlesex University, London, Editor of the journal Radical Philosophy.

Research : 13 January 2007 – 22 January 2009

Whatever Happened to Sex in Scandinavia?

The expansive research project (with eventual manifestation as an exhibition) is planned for development throughout 2007 and 2008 and addresses the representation of Scandinavia as a sexual utopic territory extolled in the international media in the 1960s and 1970s. The project delves into these representations investigating their mythical status or rightful claims. In doing so, links are made to the drafting of sexual reform initiated by the respective woman's movements at the beginning of the 20th century throughout Scandinavia, to the revisionist movements in psychoanalysis throughout the 1930s principally in the practices of Wilhelm Reich and Otto Fenichel, and moreover to the more provocative films produced in the 1960s such as I Am Curious Yellow, I Am Curious Blue. The essay relating to this research, entitled Whatever Happened to Sex in Scandinavia? I am Curious (Yellow), has been published at Afterall, issue 17, Spring 2008 and atVerksted issue 9, 2008.

Seminars and talks : 30 November –  2006

Kunst and Kapital

In 2007 OCA launched a series of talks and discussions entitled 'Kunst and Kapital' in an effort to examine the increasingly porous sectors of private and public. This series of seminars and talks aims to demystify the contemporary art market while illuminating how the critical community is being steadily streamed into these new initiatives.

Seminar : 14 October 2006

'ISMS 2: Recuperating Political Radicality in Contemporary Art' Populism and Genre

'Populism and Genre' was part of the investigation of the general theme of the ISMS series: the complex and problematic relationships between artistic movements, political movements, and individual works. The question of populism has been at the heart of debates about both the political and the formal aspects of contemporary art in Britain since the mid 1990s. This conference examined the concept of populism via the issue of genre: specifically, the changed status and functioning of genres within contemporary art, after the decline in the independent significance of traditional media (painting and sculpture), and in the context of the increasing individualism of contemporary art. Particular attention was paid to: the status of genres as social forms; art's relations to mass media genres; the strategic use of genre within post-conceptual practice; and the political functioning of genres as carriers of populism.

Seminar : 20 – 21 April 2006

ISMS 1: Recuperating Political Radicality in Contemporary Art Constructing the Political in Contemporary Art

This first seminar on the subject of 'ISMS: Recuperating Political Radicality 1. Constructing the Political in Contemporary Art' focused on the complex and problematic relationships between artistic movements, political movements, and individual works. Specific focus was placed on current dilemmas facing art production, how it is for a work to function 'critically' today, and how this relates to or in fact, neglects, politics.

Seminar : 18 February 2006

Draft Deceit (Addendum)

The seminar addressed issues explored within the exhibition 'Draft Deceit'; the relationship between the artist and society, via the issues of form and aesthetics explored by Conceptual artists in the 1960s. In a series of discussions, the seminar approached the way in which artists such as Dan Graham and Lawrence Weiner view their work in relation to their practice in the 1970s, via the light thrown by the exhibition on the post-conceptual character by contemporary art and through the standpoint of other artists who find these practices relevant to their own. Discussions focused on the use of language as a sculptural device; incompleteness as a project; the investigation of the structural properties of film; and the adoption of architectural tropes as political criticism. Organised by OCA with additional support from AHO and the Architectural Association, Oslo.

Conference : 18 – 27 January 2006

The Art of Welfare

The artists Michael Elmgreen (b. 1961, Denmark) and Ingar Dragset (b. 1969, Norway) have collaborated since 1995 on the production of powerless structures - sculptural installations that perform institutional critique in relation to sexual and other political identities. 'The Welfare Show', originally produced at Bergen Kunsthall in Norway in 2005, addressed aspects of welfare society, as implemented in the Scandinavian model of a democratic society. This model, engineered and marketed in the 1950s, has steadily deteriorated since the 1970s in response to a globalized economy. 'The Art of Welfare' was a one-day conference, in tandem with the opening of 'The Welfare Show' at the Serpentine Gallery in London, that explored artistic and political aspects of 'The Welfare Show.' Topics included: politics as content and the politics of artistic form; the Scandinavian model of welfare as a socio-spatial form of experience; the current viability of the welfare state and its possible future forms; and institutional critique and relational aesthetics.