Norwegian Hamsun Center to be part of European Capital of Culture Bodø2024

The Hamsun Centre in Hamarøy. Photo: andre_guinness on Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The famous Norwegian author Knut Hamsun and the Hamsun Center will be part of Bodø2024 with ‘Messy Corners,’ a project investing in controversial artists.

In 2020, the Hamsun Center began extensive work to replace the main exhibition in the tower at Presteid in Hamarøy.

The main exhibition will be completed as part of the celebration of the European Capital of Culture. The controversial aspects of Knut Hamsun’s life and writing will be highlighted in the new parts of the exhibition. In the application to become the capital of culture, the Hamsun Center was highlighted in the project “Messy Corners,” which is an investment in controversial artists.

Bodø2024 has set aside NOK three million for the collaboration.

“Hamsun is considered both a modern author and a controversial person. Ståle Dingstad‘s book on Hamsun and the Holocaust started a debate this year that shows how important and relevant this issue still is. The collaboration with Bodø2024 gives us an exciting opportunity to transfer experiences and knowledge into the Capital of Culture year,” said the director at the Hamsun Centre, Solveig Hirsch.

The hidden sides of the artists

For the Hamsun Center and Bodø2024, it is important to recognize that the greatest artists are also people, with all that entails. That includes messy corners and shadowy pages, something the title ‘Messy Corners’ reflects.

“This project will illuminate the messy corners of the artist’s life, and the relationship between art and the artist. People are not like the impeccable advertising images and social media profiles we are exposed to everywhere. The greatest artists are also whole people, and quality art conveys all facets of being human,” said program manager for Bodø2024, Henrik Sand Dagfinrud.

Who was Knut Hamsun?

Knut Hamsun is one of Norway’s most famous authors, especially known for his 1890 novel Hunger which is seen as a pioneering piece of work in European modernism.

On the basis of his book Growth of the Soil, he was awarded the prestigious Nobel Prize in Literature in 1920.

A controversial author, Hamsun was pro-German throughout the 1930s and supported the German occupation of Norway.

Source: #NorwayTodayTravel

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