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Art

Telemark has long traditions for art and craftsmanship. Many famous painters came to the Telemark Canal to be inspired, and to portray the beautiful landscape onto their canvases. Today we can find many art pieces alongside the canal waiting to be experienced by both locals and tourists.

There are many sculptures and art installations along the canal, different docks and inside the cities. Both small and large galleries show contemporary, folk and historical art. Parks, backyards, buildings and city centers are decored with art along the canal - which you can either witness from the canal boats, or by taking a short stroll from the different docks. It is impossible to mention every piece of art viewable, but we have taken the liberty to mention some of the highlights.

Skien
Telemark Art center can be found in the Norges Bank building in Lie, around 10 minutes hiking from Hjellebrygga. Here you can find curated exhibitions from both national and international artists.

Skiens Art Association  can be found in the Ibsen House (Ibsenhuset), which lies right across Hjellebrygga. The exhibitions here show the incredible range of norwegian and local art, where two of these exhibitions are the Telemark exhibition and the Sørlands exhibition.

Spriten Kunsthall can be found in the old liquor factory on Klosterøya. Here they have a showroom for interdisciplinary fields of art production and society of art studios. Spriten has exhibitions with contemporary art, and hosts concerts, theatre and film performances, lectures and more.

City project "Mosaic - hidden pearls" are permanent decorations of temporal artistic stuns in town. Many previous hidden parts of the city have been brought back to life due to these decorations.

Skien is the birth town of the world renowned playwright Henrik Ibsen. It is in Skien he has gotten most of its inspiration for his work. In Ibsenparken, in the middle of Skien, stands this historic man portrayed through a whole figure statue in bronze, made by Dyra Vaa.


Skotfoss 
On the main square of Skotfoss you can find the monument Papirsorterersken (2005) by Trygve M. Barstad. The sculpture is made of rust free steel and is in memory of the workers of the closed down paper factory.
Near the locks in Løveid, Skotfoss stands a bust of Hans Jørgen Christian Aall made by Jo Visdal. Aall was the man who initiated the building of the eastern part of the Telemark canal; the Norsjø-Skiens canal which opened in 1861.

Ulefoss
Ulefos Hovedgaard  is considered the most important architectural work in Norway from the age of Napoleon in the early 19th century. This was the summer residence of Niels Aall, norwegian businessman and politician. It is not an art gallery, but visitors may witness the family portraits of historical value. This building is within walking distance from the locks in Ulefoss.

Øvre Verket is a national heritage site from the early industrialization of Norway. The red painted houses were build in the early 1800s as houses for the workers at the iron factory in Ulefoss. Today there are shops, workshops and cafés. Øvre Verket is within walking distance from the locks in Ulefoss.

One of our biggest painters, August Cappelen, grew up in Holden in Ulefoss. He was a romantic nationalist painter and is renowned as a very talented artist. He painted primarily landscapes and got most of its motives around the Telemark Canal.

Lunde
The canal boats meet eachother at the locks in Lunde on their way up/down the canal. We recommend taking a stroll in the lock park of Lunde, which is a nice meeting spot for both locals, travelers and people passing by. Here you can see the sculptures "krysset" by Harald Solberg and "Locks" by Hans Martin Øien.

Kviteseid
You can find a sculpture park near the docks of Kviteseid. Here you can find numerous sculptures by renowned sculptors. Utsondhalli on Kviteseid bygdetun also has a collection of sculptures.

Dalen
Grimdalstunet was the home of the sculptor Anne Grimdalen. This old farm from the 17th century is today a museum and art gallery with a large collection of her work. She got her breakthrough when she won the contest of decorating the town hall of Oslo. You can find her works everywhere in the world; from the Netherlands to the United States of America, aswell as numerous places in Norway.

Gvarv   
The famous artist Erik Werenskiold (1855-1938) came by boat to Gvarv in 1883. He saw people in national folk costumes in a breathtaking landscape and found inspiration to paint: "Telemarksjenter", "Fra Telemark", "Aften på Lindem", "På hjemvei", "Telemarksbonde" and "En Bondebevegelse" which all can be found in the National Gallery.

Erik Werenskiold had inspired upcoming generations and Gvarv today has a lively art society. Come to Gvarv to see the talent of these artists, and to view the galleries that are here.

Akkerhaugen
Sculpture park Patmos is Norway's first sculpture park for contemporary art. It lies in a beautiful area near Norsjø, between Norsjø Hotel and Norsjø Ferieland. Here you can find three large stone sculptures by Per Benjamin among other sculptures.
Near town hall in Akkerhaugen stands the statue of Lars Fykerud made by Knut H. Odden, who lives and works in Notodden. Fykerud was a renowned fiddler who performed on the Harding fiddle. The same goes for Møllarguten, immortalized by the sculptor Hans Holmen. This you can find near Nordagutu station. Here starts a cultural trail if you are interested in the hisory of Møllarguten.

Notodden 
Telemarksgalleriet/Lysbuen in Notodden is packed with history and atmosphere. Here you can find exhibitions from professional artists that maintain an international level. In addition you are able to get something to eat and drink at the cosy café in the gallery. Right next to Telemarksgalleriet/Lysbuen is Studio K - a gallery of ceramic craftsmanship, Notodden's smallest art workshop and gallery. Studio K lies idyllic near the bridge in Tinfos. The "kitty square" on Oscar Nissens is a collection of cat sculptures, which mainly has been created by local artists.
"Ralleren" is the city's most famous sculpture. He stands in Rallarparken. He was important in the foundation of the industry in Notodden. The sculptor Dyre Vaa created his sculpture that was finished in 1965.

Around five kilometers from the center of Notodden lies the spectacular Heddal Stave church, a wooden wonder. This is North-Europe's largest and best preserved stave church that was build in the first half of the 13th century. Next to his magnificent structure you will find Heddal Bygdetun, a hidden treasure that flourishes with culture. You will find an impressive collection of buildings here, dating all the way back to the Middle Ages. One of the most renowned "rosemaler" painters, Olav Hansson, decorated the walls and ceiling of "Rambergstugo". You can also witness different folk costumes and beautiful interior.

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