Marte Eknæs

The Infrastructure of the Artwork

Oslo National Academy of the Arts, Art and Craft

Marte Eknæspractice is largely context based. Her work spans a wide range of mediums from found and fabricated objects, digital collage, drawing, text and video. She often works collaboratively and cross-disciplinaryIn 2019 Eknæs launched the transdisciplinary web platform (FOF). As part of her research project she is helping Green Producers Club to develop the climate emission calculator Green Producers Tool for use in the field of art. Her most recent project is the permanent sculpture fountain Vekselvirkning, which opens in Bærum, Norway, March 2023.



Artistic Research Spring Forum 2023

Circulation Realm: How do we grow an exhibition?

The Infrastructure of the Artwork is an investigation into the relationship between artwork and the urban context, in which these two are examined as parallel, interconnected entities. Infrastructure is seen as a shared space, giving root to both the conditions of a city and the meaning of an artwork. From these depths, I aim to find an expanded understanding of the meaning of the artwork, encompassing its production, exhibition and continued afterlife.


In my presentation I will share experiences from Circulation Realm, the first exhibition completed within this research framework. It is a collaboration with artists Michael Amstad and Nicolau Vergueiro and took place at ROM for kunst og arkitektur, Oslo Jan-Feb 2023. It was accompanied by the following descriptive text:


The exhibition’s budget, use of resources, social conditions, politics and the climate crisis are directly affected by the same mechanisms that govern the rest of society. The works reveal how technical, material and social conditions have created each of their own form.


The premise provided a fertile ground for ideas, and throughout the process we adapted to changes and adjusted our plans for the works to develop in a healthy way. These works are not ends, but bodies that need continued nourishment. Circulation Realm can therefore be seen as one (of several) harvest(s), shaped by the affordances of the host institution. In light of this, I will discuss individual works and the exhibition documents. What are the aesthetic and ethical challenges of growing an exhibition? And what might these complex material – social relationships offer for the next harvest?