At Falstad you will find a number of works of art, which offer various inputs for reflection and conversation about the history of the place. In the Falstad forest and in the former camp area there are five different monuments. In the main building’s atrium you will find the wooden sculpture “Re-remembering”. And both in the main building and the commander’s residence, several artists comment on the history of the place and the activities of the center. In the summer months we show temporary art exhibitions. Artistic approaches to history and contemporary themes also play a central role in many of Falstadsenteret’s research and development projects.
The sculpture Re-Remembering
The sculpture Re-remembering can be seen in the atrium of the main building at Falstad. It is created by visual artist Tore Reisch, and was purchased by the Falstad centre in 2016, with financial support from the foundation Sparebankstiftelsen DNB.
The sculpture consists of six pairs of feet carved in pine wood. The feet form a circle and meet in a solid knot on the top. Inside the circle is a cube with spiral shapes cut into wood. The helical forms provide associations to the DNA molecule, which determine the properties and inheritance of the body’s cells. The work focuses on the issue of trauma, and whether personal experiences of imprisonment and deprivation of liberty can be transferred to new generations. Is it possible that dramatic war experiences can also be inherited through the genes of children and grandchildren?
Memorials in the Falstad forest
The first memorial in the Falstad forest was unveiled on October 12, 1947. The memorial is designed by sculptor Odd Hilt, who himself was a prisoner at Falstad in 1942. At the turn of the year 1942-43 he fled to Sweden from Vollan Prison in Trondheim. The design is based on a relief he made for an exhibition in Stockholm in 1944.
In the postwar period, three other memorials have been unveiled in the forest. In 1963, a complex memorial was designed by sculptor Gunnar Jansson. It consists of 27 stone pyramids and a memorial stone with names and a map. Each pyramid marks one or more burial sites. In 1998, a memorial stone designed by sculptor Nils Aas was unveiled on the opposite side of the road. And in connection with the opening of the Falstad centre in 2006, a memorial stone was erected bearing the names of Yugoslav victims. This was designed by architect Atle Aas.
The memorial stone is placed close to the centre’s main building. It was erected in 1999 by former prisoners, as an act of gratefulness local helpers at Ekne. The memorial stone with bronze relief is designed by the sculptor Nils Aas.
Documentary photography: the main building before renovation
From 2004-2006, the main building at Falstad underwent extensive rehabilitation, to accommodate the newly established Falstad centre.
Before the work started, all rooms were photographed and documented by civil architect and art photographer Atle Aas.
The photographs are exhibited in the dining room and in the corridor on the second floor.
Art in the Commander’s house
In Spring 2019, the Falstad centre initiated the project “Faces of the Power – Art in the Commander’s Residence”. Six artists and writers were invited to discuss and propose artistic expressions to be incorporated into the former commander’s house: Anne Helga Henning, Dag Hoel, Edvine Larsen, Tore Reisch, Ingrid Storholmen and Gulabuddin Sukhanwar.
The first phase of the project was carried out with support from the Norwegian Cultural Council and the Fritt Ord Foundation.
Falstad Art was a temporary art project that was carried out in 2009 and 2010. The project was initiated by KORO (Public Art Norway). Four artists were invited to create independent art expressions connected to the site, history and activities of Falstad. Roddy Bell and Siri Austen’s installations “The long silence” (picture) and “Ears of the Field” were shown in 2009. Anna Baumgart (Poland) and Darko Stojkov (Serbia) showed their video works “Fresh Cherries” and “Second Journey” in 2010.