Årsutstillingen – The Annual Craft Exhibition

From the opening of Årsutstillingen 2017 at Nordenfjeldske kunstindustrimuseum (National Museum of Decorative Arts and Design) in Trondheim.
Foto
Susann Jamtøy
The Annual Craft Exhibition, in Norwegian called “Årsutstillingen”, is a juried exhibition based on an open call for entries. The exhibition aims to take the pulse of current material-based art in Norway.

History
The first Annual Craft Exhibition was produced in 1975, the same year that the Norwegian Association for Arts and Crafts (NK) was founded. The exhibition is held annually in collaboration with one of the art museums of Norway with a national mandate, The National Museum in Oslo being its most frequent host over time, together with the national art museums in Bergen and Trondheim. During a six-year period, from 2003–2008, the exhibition showcased one group of material-based arts at a time in so-called triennials. From 2009, all groups of materials were again included each year. The exhibition is hosted by KODE Art Museums in Bergen in 2019 og Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum in Tromsø in 2020. 

Open call
The exhibition has an open submission and is evaluated by NK's national jury, which consists of three artists with different professional backgrounds appointed by NK's general assembly, as well as a representative from the museum. The applications are evaluated in two rounds, first on the basis of photos and text material, and then with physical works.

Dissemination
Through the event and learning program the Annual Craft Exhibition seeks to engage the public, provide information about contemporary crafts and further its discourse, offering tours and artist presentations, workshops, discussions and seminars that target both the general public and professionals in the field. 

Catalogues
Each year a catalog is compiled in which all the exhibited artwork is documented in photographic form. See recent catalogues here.

Recent exhibition
Read recent news about the Annual Craft Exhibition here

Prices
Each year three different prices are awarded for artwork in the exhibition. The winners are first announced at the opening of the exhibition. The three prices are:

  • The Craft Prize from The Relief Fund for Visual Artists (BKH) is presented to the artist behind the most striking work at the Annual Craft Exhibition. The winner is chosen by a designated jury, and is awarded NOK 150,000.
  • Finn Erik Alsos’ Commemorative Prize goes to the artist behind a work in the Annual Craft Exhibition that exemplifies a particularly innovative work and demonstrates a strong development in the quality of the participant’s oeuvre and/or in the field at large. The winner is chosen by NK’s exhibition jury, and is awarded NOK 100,000.
  • NK’s Debutant Prize goes to an artists who has not previously participated in the Annual Craft Exhibition, for the debutant work in the exhibition which the jury believes is the most accomplished when it comes to artistic quality and present-day actuality. The winner is chosen by NK’s exhibition jury, and is awarded NOK 25,000.