The opening of Kunstsilo is not too far away, and its artistic director Trude Gomnæs Ugelstad is busy preparing exhibitions. She is aiming to create such powerful art experiences that they generate a record number of visitors, and a content which everyone will want to see, whether they are passionate art lovers or not. Children and young people are a particularly important target group.
Instead of written assignments there will be textures, colours, shapes and spaces. Rather than one correct answer, the children will be able to experiment, think aloud, interpret and ask questions.
“Major art experiences that we have as children can stay with us for the rest of our lives and expand our understanding of our own society. In Kunstsilo the children will be able to see art in new ways. There will be music, workshops, play, creativity and new ways of approaching life,” says Trude.
The art of building bridges between the museum and young people
Innovative interaction technology will also assist in building bridges between the museum and young people.
“For young people, major parts of life involve technology such as mobile phones, VR, AR, beacons and suchlike. By embracing such tools in our exhibitions, we can create seamless and powerful experiences that reflect the lives young people actually live. Most of the older children will be carrying a mobile phone, and it makes sense to look for opportunities to use it in the exhibitions. That said, we will also enable young people to feel what it is like to walk through an exhibition without interruptions from technology and outside distractions. That can also be a valuable experience for many,” she says.
Communicating art to children and young people is an exciting challenge and a continuation of the work being conducted at present. The museum is developing fascinating projects with various activities for and with young people.
“The museum currently welcomes children from pre-schools and schools as well as students in its premises of just 70 square metres. Once Kunstsilo opens its doors, they will be able to revel in three floors full of new ways of perceiving the world. This will amaze them and make them wiser, and perhaps also provoke and irritate them. It will be fantastic!” says Trude.
“Our society needs inventive and resourceful people, and more lessons in maths and Norwegian are unlikely to be the only thing that is needed. Arts subjects stimulate our creative abilities, but creativity is also a skill that needs to be identified, developed and cared for. It requires concentration, perseverance and the ability to reason and think freely. This is where Kunstsilo can help.”
Kunstsilo is being built in the same area as the new Kristiansand School of Visual and Performing Arts, which will teach music, drama and visual art.
“The proximity means that the over 96 000 annual visitors to the arts school will come even closer to the arts world. Having this school so close by, also helps make the area come alive, and I am sure they have a lot to offer us and vice versa,” Trude concludes.