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Wednesday, October 16, 2019


Last Year. One of the exhibits, Dugnad Days, shows how a series of local community workshops which began in April can, through participatory placemaking, advance a collective, bespoke process of building resilience and the social sustainability of Sletteløkka, a suburb of Oslo. Dugnad Days is coopting the longstanding Norwegian dugnad tradition of co-production and co-creation with citizens – practices fostering human and environmental wellbeing.
Inspired by this year’s *Oslo Architecture Triennale [OAT], the installation titled “The Library”—advances OAT’s 2019 theme of “Degrowth.” It also promotes sharing our resources, imagining alternatives, freedom to play, and democratic education; all issues central to transitioning to a future free from the growth imperative.

The Library celebrates sharing, de-commodification, and democratisation of goods and ideas in a welcoming heart of a community.

The Library will explore how libraries can play a central role in breaking free from the growth paradigm. During the eight week program of the Triennale, The National Museum – Architecture will undergo a complete transformation from a gallery of architecture past and present to a library of architectural futures. The library is organized into four collections: the subjective, the objective, the systemic and the collective. Each of the four collections will be richly populated with drawings, models, materials, artifacts, devices, and ideas exploring the architecture of a Degrowth economy to be critiqued, measured, studied and enjoyed.

The Venue. The Library installation will be held at the National Museum – Architecture in Oslo.
The Subjective Collection
I am a subject. I am a constellation of thoughts, memories, and perceptions. I am affected. I affect. I stand alone. I am the unseen hand, the consumer, the voter. I am the centre of the universe. I am a drop in the ocean. I get scared. I get angry. I love. I ask, how do I care and cultivate? How do I change? How do I relate? How do I perform? How do I succeed, or fail? How do I play? Can I play?

The Objective Collection
It is an object. It is bold. It is elastic. It is durable and fluffy. It is soft, tough and warm. It dirties. It cleans. It is empirical, logical and ingenuous. It has a mass, texture, compressive strength and carbon footprint. It disintegrates. It sticks together. It is maintained or neglected. It can be seen, touched and studied. It builds new forms. It supports systems, old and new. It nourishes ecology and expresses imagination. How does it perform? How does it sound? How does it help? Is it alive?

The Systemic Collection
These are systems. These are networks. These are environments — natural and built. These are technologies, economies, and governments. These are the connections between things; infrastructures that order, orchestrate and incentivise. These are cities. These are the means of control, resistance, production, and liberation. These propose new strategies, structures, and economies. They question norms. They ask if new systems could refashion a built environment that incentivizes social and environmental justice?

The Collective Collection
We are collective. We share. We exchange. We depend. We have things in common. We communicate and connect. We argue. We are greater than the sum of our parts. We are a family, a group, a tribe, a people. We are a tapestry of meanings, languages, relationships, values, and cultures. We create spaces for living together, for promoting social bonds, for sharing food, goods, ideas and company. We perform cultural rituals. How do we collaborate? How do we build common and democratic systems? Can we empower each other?

For more on OAT click here.
The OAT 2019 curatorial team (l-r): Phineas Harper, Matthew Dalziel, Cecilie Sachs Olsen and Maria Smith.

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