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Rjukan Solarpunk Academy will organize a biennial Solarpunk Arts Festival starting from the summer of 2023. The festival is going to be an artistic-academic collaboration synchronized with the Empowered Futures PHD-school. Through art, we will contextualize the research questions embedded within the PHD-school – big and looming questions interconnected with the ongoing paradigm shift in the energy sector:

From fossil infrastructure to renewable infrastructure,- the socio-economic consequences of people around the world, and the sublime challenges represented by human-induced climate change and potential ecological collapse looming on the horizon.

Art can inspire and communicate in surprising ways, and artists are a crucial resource for imagining innovative solutions to the most urgent questions around us. Ever since solarpunk came to be in 2009, the complexity of the concept has emerged remarkably. Today, the term has become more than a sci-fi fantasy. As we continue to fill the term with new content, we can all contribute to the shape of jazz to come in an uncertain future.

The festival will take place in the unique setting of Rjukan, a historic UNESCO-site of radical industrial innovation – and a massive living museum of energy infrastructure. An ``Anthropocene Diorama`` so to speak.

Through collaboration with Norsk Industriarbeidermuseum the participating artists will produce their projects with site-specific-approach in historic context throughout the spring, for the festival that will open on the 29th of June 2023.

For the 2023 pilot, we are developing a strategy of network curating i collaboration with partner-organisations from the Nordic region.

Our curatorial partners are all artist-initiated organizations grown out of rural settings, with various approaches to sustainability as a topic for artistic production, and with a shared experience of how the decentralized approach creates a different interaction with the general audience than what you might experience in the central districts and larger towns.


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