A government panel in Oslo, Norway has recommended tearing down buildings damaged in a 2011 terrorist attack when a car bomb was detonated in front of the building housing the Prime Minister's office in the Regjeringskvartalet (Government Quarter), killing eight people and damaging surrounding Brutalist buildings by Erling Viksjø.
The buildings are two of this city’s signature examples of Brutalist architecture ( from the French béton brut, or "raw concrete"- a style of architecture that flourished from the 1950s to the mid-1970s.) The buildings were designed by Norwegian architect Erling Viksjø (1910 – 1971) . Viksjo' design " attempts to process the modernist tradition to create a new monumentality where concrete expressive development potential and an integrated artistic decoration are key".
The "integrated artistic decoration" in the two buildings up for demolition are five murals painted by Pablo Picasso —the artist's first works executed in concrete.
Proponents of demolition plan on taking down the murals brick by brick and reconstructing them elsewhere. But preservationists point out that the murals are site specific, designed by Picasso for these particular buildings.
The Picasso Administration calls idea of removing the artwork and tearing down the buildings"unbelievable".
Works of Pablo Picasso in Oslo, Norway, threatened by demolishment.
|“The Fishermen” mural by Picasso and Carl Nesjar|
(photograph by Helge Høifødt, via Wikimedia)
|Carl Nesjar sandblasting the concrete|
|(photograph by W. Råger, via Oslo Museum)|