Installation shot: Øystein Thorvaldsen / Henie Onstad Archive
Fleeting Form presents Henie Onstad’s collection of posters for the very first time.
The collection consists of more than 3000 posters acquisited through purchase, donation and other exchange of printed materials. In addition, Henie Onstad arranged eight surveys of poster art within the first decade, and much of what was displayed was purchased and collected. Acquisition ceased in the early 1980s, and for almost forty years the posters remained untouched in Henie Onstad’s archives.
Ever since its emergence as a mass-communication form, in France in the 1880s, the poster has functioned as a bridge between art, design and consumer culture. The poster has been a vehicle for selling products, announcing events, rallying for causes and communicating effectively with a savvy audience. The poster, as an art form, has consequently held undeservedly low status: it lacks the exclusive character of painting and drawing.
Fleeting form focuses not on advertising or political posters, but rather the third major category: cultural promotion. The exhibition follows the cultural poster’s development, climate and influence over a 20-year period, as an original artwork, historical document and a strikingly effective form of visual communication, made by some of the 20th century’s most renowned artists, designers and devoted amateurs.