Winter, spring, summer and autumn of 2022


We proudly announce that UKS has moved to the old and venerable Søilen Theatre in Keysers gate 1, only two blocks from our previous exhibition location at St. Olavs gate 3.

Keysers gate 1 has for the last few years housed Prosjektskolen art school, and we are delighted to keep the building within the arts. The space was built in 1930 and, with a few alterations, the building has kept its original design and floorplan. After accommodating unruly art students for more than fifteen years, the building requires refurbishment and renovation to fit UKS’ needs, in addition to the rehabilitation of original architectural details. The premises comprise 800 sqm, including exhibition spaces, workshops, offices, meeting rooms, a kitchen, and other project rooms.

The theater was built for the arts and has a rich history. The famous Norwegian actor (and diva) Wenche Foss made her debut there in 1935, and celebrated French singer Édith Piaf once performed on its stage. During the Second World War the humorous entertainer Leif Juster opened Edderkoppen theater on the premises and had great success harassing the occupiers from the stage. Word on the street is that Juster wasn’t only harassing onstage, but allegedly hid Oslo’s largest weapons depot underneath the stage floor. In 1945, the young and collectively run Studioteateret took over, which also collaborated with UKS in 1946.

When UKS opens its doors in January 2023, we will present a newly renovated exhibition space, workshops, communication room, archive, and library. The exhibition space of 200 sqm can make use of a ceiling height of almost seven meters, and the other rooms can be used regardless of our program in the main exhibition space. It gives UKS the opportunity to gather more people, create meeting places for artists and the public, and simultaneously house a political arena that will generate new opportunities for the trade union.

Renovation and rehabilitation of the premises is being carried out in collaboration with the architectural firm Fragment, and with generous support from the Savings Bank Foundation DNB, the Arts Council Norway, the Relief Fund for Visual Artists and the Bergesen Foundation.

UKS officially opens for members and the public in January 2023. We can barely wait to welcome you!


*Image: UKS’ new premises in Keysers gate 1, before renovation. Photo by Jan Khür.

UKS in new premises in Keysers gate 1. Photo by Jan Khür.

Snapshots from the renovation spring 2022. Photos: Ida Møller Engebretsen

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