Annual Conference 2005, Oslo (Norway)

15 years ago

Hosts:

Programme

Saturday, 3 September 2005

11.00 ICDAD Board meeting, The Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, St. Olavsgate 1, 0165 Oslo
13.00 - 14.00 Registration, The Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, St. Olavsgate 1, 0165 Oslo
14.00 Official opening in the Big Hall
14.30 - 16.00 Lectures
16.00 - 17.00 Light Refreshments
17.00 Norwegian Decorative Arts and Design 1100-2005, tour of our newly mounted permanent collection
20.00 Opening Reception in the Main Hall

Sunday, 4 September 2005

09.00 Full-day excursion. Departure to the Oscarshall Royal Summercastle (neogothic)
11.00 Norwegian Folk Museum, visit to the Stavechurch and the exhibitions about Norway and Sweden 1814-1905 and Norway and Denmark 1700-1905
13.00 Lunch at the museum restaurant
14.30 The Viking Ships
15.30 Departure to the Bogstad Manor-house (neo-classicism)
19.30 The Bottle Museum
20.00 Dinner at Ekeberg Restaurant, newly restored 1930s interior with a magnificent view of the Oslo fiord

Monday, 5 September 2005

09.30 Lectures
11.00 Break
11.30 Lectures
13.00 Lunch in University Aula, Edvard Munch's The Sun
14.00 Tour of the old University buildings, interiors, art collections.(neo-classicism)
16.00 Tour of the old Royal Castle of Akershus (medieval and Renaissance)
17.30 Tour of "Kiss the Frog" exhibition, celebrating the 1905 National Jubilee in the National Museum's new exhibition pavilion
20.00 Dinner at the Theatre Café in Hotel Continental (Art Nouveau restaurant with Viennese music)

Tuesday, 6 September 2005

09.00 Lectures
11.00 Break
11.30 Lectures
13.00 Lunch
14.00 Marketplace and general Assembly for members
15.30 Visit to the Royal Castle (empire style)
17.00 Visit to Norwegian contemporary designers, Norway Says, K 8, etc.
20.00 Farewell dinner at Frognerseteren restaurant (dragon style) at Holmenkollen with a spectacular view of Oslo and the fiord

SECOND PORTION OF CONFERENCE - EXCURSION TO THE NORTH
Wednesday, 7 September 2005

08.11 Departure by train over the mountains to Bergen - the most scenic train route in Europe
14.52 Arrival Bergen, transfer to Neptune Hotel
16.30 Tour of the West Norway Museum of Decorative Arts and Design
19.00 Reception and supper buffet in the museum

Thursday, 8 September 2005

09.00 Full-day excursions to "Bryggen"- the historic harbor of the Hanseatic city of Bergen from the 11th Century (UNESCO's World Heritage List) and to the Haakon Hall castle from 1247-61
11.00 Damsgaard Manor (rococo)
12.30 Fløyen Restaurant at top of the mountain for Lunch
14.00 Gamlehaugen Royal Residence (dragon-style)
16.00 Edvard Grieg's Home Troldhaugen with reception and special concert
18.00 Departure with the luxury liner Polar Light for Trondheim
20.00 Dinner on board as we sail out the spectacular Sogne-fiord (No heavy seas in the fiords)

Friday, 9 September 2005

Sailing to the Art Nouveau city of Ålesund, the city of roses Molde, Kristiansund, the Geiranger fiord to Trondheim. According to National Geographic Traveler magazine, this is the most spectacular seatour in the world. On board of the ship all meals will be provided. Ballroom dancing in the evening

Saturday, 10 September 2005

08.15 Arrival Trondheim, transfer to Britannia Hotel
09.00 Full day excursion to The Nidaros Cathedral (Romanesque and Gothic), the northernmost cathedral of the world. The Archbishop's palace and exhibition
11.00 Stiftsgården the Royal Residence (rococo and neo-classicism)
12.30 Ringve Museum, the home of the hero Peter Wessel Tordenskiold, and now the National Museum of Musical Instruments
13.30 Lunch at Ringve
14.30 Tour of some of the medieval Kings' Sagas cites and manors, Lade Manor etc.
17.00 Visit to the North Norway Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, with the Henry van de Velde room, the Finn Juhl room etc.
20.00 Farewell dinner in The Palm restaurant, Britannia Hotel

Sunday, 11 September 2005

Free program and return home.

 

Topics

Are we collecting too much of the wrong thing?

  1. ISSUES BEHIND COLLECTING
    The problem of our rapidly growing collections - not least of all our 20th-century craft and industrial design holdings - is that most are going into storerooms, thus giving many museum a financial burden that is increasingly a great challenge. Most institutions are unable to raise money for extending their storage and staff for these expanding collections, so there should be a limit of the size of decorative art museums. We collect not least with the purpose of securing objects that we find of value for the next generations. Documentation of our material, cultural heritage, however, could also be conducted by collecting drawings, photography, advertisements, reviews in newspapers and other ephemera.

  2. THE DIALOGUE BETWEEN EDUCATION, INSTALLATION AND PERMANENT COLLECTIONS
    Do we want to educate our constituency as was the case when the museums were founded in the nineteenth century or will we follow the picture galleries and provide the visitor with a nice experience with a little information in order not to disturb the aesthetic show or challenge the public in any way? Could there be a way to approach this problem other than the expensive reinstallations of our permanent collections which currently seems to be the conventional wisdom as a panacea for our declining numbers? What many smaller museums need is perhaps a closer connection between research and what is put out on exhibit. We need to look at our permanent collections and find the many different stories that can be told by these objects.

  3. CRITICISM AND SELF-CRITICISM: HOW DO WE STIMULATE OUR FIELD?
    We all know that the media only publishes information on certain exhibitions. Could we be more active in writing small articles for some of the newspapers? We all like to have our research printed in the leading journals, but if we want to attract visitors to our museums, we should perhaps do both. Another issue in our field is criticism. In the decades around 1900, curators, craftsmen and teachers at the design and architectural schools were not afraid advocating and criticizing contemporary design - as a matter of fact many found it their duty to do so in order to promote "good taste." Today we have learned to be objective, or neutral, on such issues and only indirectly indicating what our thoughts about quality by way of the objects we include in exhibitions and permanent collections. We are a very silent - and too politically correct - community. Could we perhaps change this?

  4. INTRODUCTION, CONTINUATION AND REVIVALS: PROBLEMS IN DOCUMENTATION
    Today we can readily see how objects from the 1940s-1960s are still being produced or are now being reproduced. This is, however, not a new phenomenon. Although this situation does not allude to the Renaissance or neoclassicism, but rather to the fact that many objects have been made over the course of very long periods, for example, porcelain and silver in the rococo idiom were made far into the neoclassical period. As to our own time, we have a problem concerning the documentation of the "style" of our time. Shall we still treat the decorative arts and design from the art-historical point of view, according greater significance to the first example made rather than later versions and how should we address and document the later versions of these first examples?

  5. UTILIZING THE RESOURCES WE WORK SO HARD TO COLLECT AND PROTECT - OUR PERMANENT COLLECTIONS
    Many members note the diminishing amount of funding within their own institutions as well as the general reduction of outside financial support as well. At the same time, traveling exhibitions have witnessed an astounding rise in costs for packing, insurance and shipping. This is a pattern that is not likely to change and one that ultimately will have serious consequences for our museums. Should we not be looking at our own permanent collections as a resource for new and imaginative exhibitions that can remain within the four walls of our institutions? If we spend so much thought and money on adding to these collections, then why does no much of this material remain in storage, decade after decade? We must find ways to reinvigorate our museums through a more active use of these collections - or at the most, the collections within our own, respective regions. Members should offer examples of the methods they have devised for better exploiting their permanent holdings through reinstallation of their collections, or the assembly of small exhibitions that explicate certain themes and ideas.

Many members note the diminishing amount of funding within their own institutions as well as the general reduction of outside financial support as well. At the same time, traveling exhibitions have witnessed an astounding rise in costs for packing, insurance and shipping. This is a pattern that is not likely to change and one that ultimately will have serious consequences for our museums.

June 2005