Norway’s new patrons of art

Christian Ringnes in Ekebergparken in Oslo. FOTO: SAS Scandinavian Traveler / Thomas Ekström

Christian Ringnes in Ekebergparken in Oslo. FOTO: Faksimile fra Scandinavian Traveler / Thomas Ekström

(SCANDINAVIAN TRAVELER) Norway’s public art scene is being transformed by the donations of wealthy business people. But not everybody in the egalitarian country is happy about this.

 

 

What’s happened here?” property investor Christian Ringnes asks. He’s walking around the Ekebergparken, a sculpture park in Oslo, and spots some garbage on the floor by a trash can. “Birds have probably been at it,” he continues. “It breaks my heart to see litter. Everything should be pristine here.” Ringnes is from the family that founded Norway’s largest brewery, Ringnes, in the 1870s. He is a well-known property developer who owns restaurants and hotels in Oslo. And he’s an art collector. He financed and initiated the creation of Ekebergparken and donated many pieces
of art from his own collection to it, including sculptures by Damien Hirst, Fernando Boerto and Salvador Dalí.

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