Aug 27, 2017
Kunstnernes Hus Cinema, Oslo


Conversation with Per Platou

For FRANK’s first salon of the autumn, we have invited Per Platou from Videokunstarkivet, the Norwegian Video Art Archive, to screen works from the early years of Norwegian video art, highlighting artists who experimented with new consumer technologies of the time. Videokunstarkivet started as a pilot project developed by PNEK (Production Network for Electronic Art) and ran from 2012 to 2015 with the ambitious aim of collecting all Norwegian video art produced since the mid-1960s. The archive has taken on a pivotal role in digitizing and making accessible a large body of artwork; these videos are in danger of becoming lost to future generations unless institutional structures are put in place to conserve them.

Platou, who has run Videokunstarkivet since its inception, will discuss the importance of founding such an archive as well as its future life. We will present a small selection from the over 2,000 works by the more than 500 artists included in the archive, including Tegn (1987) by Kristin Bergaust, Fingerpoint III (1985) by Kjell Bjørgeengen, Toilet Mirror (1983) by Morten Børresen, Video-Audio-Ago (1983) by Terje Munthe, Terra Pax (Drøm) (1987) by Ann-Elise Pettersen (with Einar Hyndøy jr.) and Sigel (1986) by Camilla Wærenskjold.

The evening is a continuation of an exhibition curated by FRANK and the artist-run initiative Louise Dany as part of Tromsø International Film Festival, which opened at Kurant in January 2017. The title of the exhibition, To Do or Not to Be, was borrowed from Morten Børresen’s videohappening at Henie Onstad Kunstsenter in 1983, and the exhibition included the works listed above. To Do or Not to Be was a journey into the archives driven not by an urge to undertake a historic survey of an era, but rather by a curious and open search for works that were new to us and that seem relevant today. Video is a medium that has gone through tremendous technological advancements in the last thirty years, and “ungoogleable” artists such as the Skolt Samí artist Ann-Elise Pettersen, who we will screen at this salon, are now on the threshold of getting recognition, largely due to the work done by Platou and his co-director Ida Lykken Ghosh at Videokunstarkivet.

Per Platou is Director of Videokunstarkivet and an artist and curator based in Oslo. He has worked with electronic media, sound art, radio, film and theatre. He has curated a number of exhibitions, symposiums and screenings in Norway and internationally.