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10 January 2024

ISGIES – gallery supported activity in 2023

The grant scheme ISGIES (International Support for Galleries and Independent Exhibition Spaces) aims to strengthen the participation of Norway based galleries abroad and contribute to increasing both the demand and internationalisation of contemporary art, including fine arts and contemporary crafts.

OCA granted the highest ever sum of NOK 8.437.026 in 2023 to 47 fair participations for 33 visual art galleries, 5 arts & crafts galleries and 9 arts book publishers. The number of participations was one down from 2022 but the total sum granted was NOK 2.161.447 higher then in 2022.

NOK 5.927.330 went to fair fees, NOK 1.813.925 to art transport, NOK 458.512 to information material related to the participation at the fair, NOK 104.000 for external consultants for developing PR, promotion and marketing of the presentation in the art fair, NOK 69.623 to travel, NOK 38.289 to art insurance and NOK 25.347 to accommodation.

Presence at main art fairs helps solidify both galleries and artists in the international art scene of collectors, curators and museums. Having been shown at an art fair can give extra value and interest on to an art work.

High participation at Danish and Swedish art fairs

Also this year Denmark had the highest number of Norwegian fair participations with 8 at CHART, 5 at Enter Art Fair and 1 at Juxtapose Art Fair.

CHART had increased attendance this year with more then 25.000 visitors and a strong presence from world-class institutions such as MoMA (US), Palais de Tokyo (FR), Buffalo AKG Art Museum (US) and The British Museum (UK). CHART also reported of unprecedented press and media coverage, and this year’s fair was marked by a surge of new collectors, a strong presence from international museums and foundations, as well as high levels of institutional acquisitions.

CHART had 8 participants from Norway, 5 in the visual art section and 3 at the book section. The 5 visual art galleries reported of in total 4 sales at the fair.

Sweden saw the second highest participation with 8 at Market Art Fair, 2 at Market Debut, 2 at Stockholm Furniture Fair and 1 at Supermarket Art Fair, all taking place in Stockholm.

Market Art Fair in Stockholm had 8 visual art galleries participating from Norway and is, as CHART in Copenhagen, an art fair for galleries from the Nordic region. The 8 galleries reported of in total 32 sales at the fair.

See full list of ISGIES recipients in 2023 here 

Nordic countries 'Guest Country' at Tokyo Art Book Fair

TABF6 Entrance hall
TABF20 Exhibition room for the Nordics 1x1

The farthest away participations were at Tokyo Art Book Fair (TABF) 2023 (23rd – 26th November) held at Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo. The fair is the biggest in its kind in Asia and had approximately 300 publishers and 22.000 visitors.

For their 7th edition the « Guest Country » program to set special focus on publishing culture in a single country or region, featured the five Nordic countries Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland. With 18 publishers from this region they delved into the Nordic art book scene through a series of programs including exhibitions, talk-shows and screenings.

TABF invited five key figures from each of the Nordic countries to curate contemporary art books and zines as well as important publications that have influenced each of their countries and to build a 4-day exclusive book store at TABF.

Elise By Olsen was the guest curator from Norway. She is the founder and Director of the International Library of Fashion Research that collaborates with the Norwegian National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design and is situated in their premises.

Elise curated a separate corner “Baggage Claim” with Norwegian artists and art books of her selection in the same big room as the other five Norwegian exhibitors called the « Nordic Art Book Store ».

Hanatsubaki Magazine, an art periodical published by Japan’s top brand Shiseido invited Elise By Olsen as guest editor for their special edition and to take part in curator talks and other fringe programs with Shiseido.

TABF5 Guest curator Elise By Olsen and counsellor Lunde along with Shiseido staff 1x1

Guest curator Elise By Olsen and Counsellor Oddbjørn Lunde along with Shiseido staff.

TABF18 Hanatsubaki Magazin Special Edition by guest editor Elise By Olsen 1x1

Hanatsubaki Magazin Special Edition by guest editor Elise By Olsen.

TABF11 Baggage Claim by Elise By Olsen 1x1

Baggage Claim by Elise By Olsen.

Five publishers from Norway participated at Tokyo Art Book Fair (TABF) 2023. FUKT Magazine and Multipress received support from the ISGIES grant scheme for their participation.The exhibitors from Norway were:

TABF7 Fukt Magazine 1x1

FUKT Magazine

FUKT Magazine, (presented their latest edition of FUKT Magazine with the theme « The Unknown » presenting both Norwegian and international artists. The specifically selected Norwegian artist for this edition is Vanessa Baird).

TABF9 Multipress 1x1


Multipress, (presented art books on these six artists: Jon Benjamin Tallerås, Margareta Bergmann, Mariken Kramer, Marte Aas, Line Bøhmer Løkken, Verena Winkelman, Siri Ekker Svendsen).

TABF19 Northing Kinakaal forlag 1x1

Northing Kinakaal forlag

Northing/Kinakaal, (presented among others their latest publications being three picture books by two Japanese artists wrapped in Japanese-style Furoshiki wrapping).

TABF22 Foot Books and Oddbjorn 1x1

Foot Books

Foot Books, (presented previous releases and three new zines with the artists Oda Iselin Sønderland, Carl Mannov og Erlend Peder Kvam).

TABF15 Bjarne Bare 1x1

Bjarne Bare

Bjarne Bare (the centerpiece was his new photography book “The Hollow Man” (Hassla Books, 2023) for which he published a special edition for TABF. He also put together works by other artists along with his own works of photography, naming his stand “Bjarne Bare & Friends”).



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