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A REAL WORK OF ART (Oslo, Norway)

August 24, 2015


2nd – 20th September 2015

RAM GalleriKongens gate 3, 0153 Oslo, Norway

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Featuring: Corina L. Apostol (ArtLeaks), Federico Geller, Fokus Grupa, Nikolay Oleynikov (Chto Delat?), Iulia Toma

Curated by: Rena Rädle & Vladan Jeremić (ArtLeaks)


Opening program, 2nd September 2015

RAM Gallery, Kongens gate 3, 0153 Oslo, Norway

18h Promotion of the ArtLeaks Gazette #3 and lecture Art Workers Between Precarity and Resistance: A Genealogy by Corina L. Apostol (ArtLeaks).

18:30h Talks by Hilde Tørdal (Norske Billedkunstnere / Norwegian Association of Visual Artists) and curators Rena Rädle & Vladan Jeremić (ArtLeaks).

19h A mise-en-scène of “Circus Melodrama” – a sketch for a theatre fable for cultural workers, with the participation of the audience

19:30h music and drinks


A Real Work of Art – art, work, and solidarity structures

Although we live in a time of creative industries, which implies the emergence of a new proletariat of cultural workers, artistic work is not yet considered ‘real’ work. Artists and art critics alike nurture the utopian idea of artistic practice as a form of liberated, non-alienating work. Nevertheless, platforms like ArtLeaks and other initiatives publish ‘Stories from the Production Line’, to quote the famous title by the dramatist Heiner Müller, highlighting working conditions in the global art system, the corporatization of art financing and the precarious livelihoods of artists, unpaid labour, problematic sponsors – all the problems that now plague the art world.

“A Real Work of Art” is less about the presentation of artworks and more about the organization of art workers. The exhibition’s ‘raw material’ consists of the experiences of artists who have tried to organize themselves into associations promoting improved working conditions for artists. Such initiatives are as old as the labour movement itself, and they can be said to form the backbone of today’s positions and initiatives. The participating artists share important ideas about art and work, organizational structures and solidarity.

The aim of the exhibition is to generate a temporary ‘hot spot’ for these issues – one that can be useful for Norwegian artists and artist organizations who are grappling with cuts in public funding and other factors affecting the conditions for artists today.

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