»In the Usual Direction of Travel« manifests the movement at the heart of this exhibition. Visitors will be invited to walk across the Khio campus and follow an itinerary to see the show: from inside to outside, from one artwork to the next, from the Seilduken gallery right down to the shore of Akerselva.
This itinerary is very much »in the usual direction of travel« for the artists – both students and professors – who use the campus daily. But most do not associate walking across these well-worn paths with taking a trip. With the word “travel,” the exhibition title adds the sense of having accomplished a voyage, a wandering, an expedition, a trek, an adventure – even if the destinations are nearby.
That is how many of the MFA artists have experienced their studies, their work with diverse materials and, above all, their collaborations and exchanges with each other over the past two years. Making art can be a way of travelling – with little displacement but a lot of discovery: on a wood block, in a glaze, in a copper wire, on a thread. Of course, as the degree show, this exhibition is an end – and a beginning – of a long journey over time.
While marking their own rite of passage, the artists will present the public with works that challenge our perceptions of everyday life. Inspirations include imaginary travels, such Douglas Adams’s Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (1978-80), Marguerite Yourcenar’s A Coin in Nine Hands (1934) and J.G. Ballard’s Concrete Island (1973), and real travels that involved very little movement: Xavier de Maistre’s Voyage Around My Room (1794), Jean Cocteau’s Opium (1930), Gaston Bachelard’s The Poetics of Space (1958), Aleksandr R. Luria’s The Mind of a Mnemonist: A Little Book about a Vast Memory (1968), George Perec’s Species of Spaces (1974) and even Sei Shonagon’s The Pillow Book (1002) which articulates an elaborate, intense aesthetic experience of materials.