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Emanuel Vigeland Museum

 

Mausoleet


Emanuel Vigeland's Museum
at Slemdal is one of Oslo's best kept secrets. The museum's main attraction is a dark, barrel-vaulted room, completely covered with fresco paintings. The 800 sq.m. fresco Vita depicts human life from conception till death, in dramatic and often explicitly erotic scenes. Large groups of bronze figures reiterate the dedication to the mystery of procreation. Entering the museum is a unique experience. The impression of the dimly lit frescoes with multitudes of naked figures is reinforced by the unusual and overwhelming acoustics of the room.

Emanuel Vigeland (1875-1948) erected the building in 1926, intended as a future museum for his sculptures and paintings. He eventually decided that the museum should also serve as a mausoleum. All the windows were closed and his ashes were to rest in an urn above the entrance door. Influenced by Italian prototypes, he named his building Tomba Emmanuelle.

The museum is a private foundation and was opened to the public on 8. December 1959. The museum receives funding from Oslo Kommune, Kulturetaten and Norsk Kulturråd.