Mariken Kramer

Mariken Kramer

Mariken Kramer is a visual artist based in Oslo, whose work focuses on structural and social aspects of the human condition; investigating how we perceive, interact, categorize and tell our stories.

My work deals with social and personal issues related to being human among other humans and focuses on underlying mechanisms in interpersonal encounters and relations, as well as on the vulnerability of the individual within the social group. I am intrigued by the psychological, structural and social aspects that constitute us as individuals and how we, through different narratives and storytelling, perceive, (re)present and construct our identities in relation to the collective that we are part of (or excluded from).

My film “Art 35.5 Hours a Week” (2017), a collaboration with Eli Eines, depicts the National Gallery in Oslo from the perspective of the security guards who work there, reflecting on the rhythm of their working day and how the building and its works of art touch them as individuals. The film gives voice to a group of people who are seldom heard in these matters. My work has been shown at galleries, museums and film festivals in Norway and abroad.

Patterns of Inclusion

Two channel HD Video / 09:00 min / Looped / 2013

‘Patterns of Inclusion’ investigates ideas of social inclusion and mechanisms of ex­clusion through the metaphor of a Norwegian children’s ring game. This game can be seen as a reflection of the individual as a social being, constantly striving to be part of the circle, part of the community. “Patterns of Inclusion” suggests the complexity of community feeling, with its promise of security, belonging and love, whilst also accommodating exclusion and sometimes even abuse.

The work is produced in collaboration with the artist run platform Tenthaus Oslo and together with students and teachers at Sofienberg Secondary School, a school with youth who have a minority background and short residence in Norway. Their participation in the project reflects their own social reality within the framework of Norwegian asylum and immigration policy.

‘Patterns of Inclusion’ was awarded the Annual Autumn Exhibition's Fineart Prize in 2013 and is on display at Bodø Police station in Norway after it was aquired by KORO (Public Art Norway) in 2014. It was also part of the exhibition “SKULPTUR” at RBS in London in 2015.


Two channel HD Video / 01:00 min / Looped / 2011

‘Schismogenesis’ is a two-channel video work. The first video shows a hand drawing up a line through space, a boundary. The second video is a stop motion animation, made up of pairs of words written on a blackboard seperated by mathematical symbols of comparison . Schismogenesis literally means “creation of division”. Within anthropology the concept was developed by Gregory Bateson in 1935 and accounted for how certain forms of relational and social processes lead to an increase in differentiation between groups and individuals. To categorize and differentiate is an integral part of how we understand / organize the world around us, but who is the “we” and the “I” that are drawn up? What are the possibilities of us ending up on the “wrong side” of the signs? And why do we need to mark boundaries?

‘Schismogenesis’ was part of the Norwegian Drawing Biennial in 2013, the exhibition SKULPTUR at RBS in London in 2015 and was aquired by KORO (Public Art Norway) for Hamar Culture House in 2014.