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Secret Love/Kjær leik

Art of gay love in China and the Nordic countries meet in the Historical Museum. Throughout history, gay love has manifested itself in different ways. Art can act as a mirror image of love, and the vulnerability that comes with it. In this exhibition, artists from China and the Nordic Region unfold their lives, stories, dreams and lusts.

Image may contain: Wedding dress, Bride, Photograph, Gown, Bridal clothing.

Photo by Yang Guowei, part of the exhibition "Secret Love"

Experience a wide range of art and artists

The exhibition shows works from Chinese and Nordic artists over the course of a century:

  • "Secret Love" is a photo exhibition borrowed from the National Museums of World Culture in Stockholm and shows the power and the changes in Chinese society and the importance it has for LHBTI people. At the Historical Museum, the audience can experience works by 20 famous Chinese contemporary artists such as Gao Brothers, Chi Peng, Ma Liuming, Zhang Yuan and Shi Tou.
  • Bolette Berg (1872-1944) and Marie Høeg (1866-1949) are an iconic Norwegian lesbian couple that, around the 1900s, took a lot of pictures of each other and others where they played with identity, gender and proximity.
  • Sam Hultin is a Swedish contemporary artist who works with stories of marginalized people and gay storytelling through performance and video. Ze created a new work for the exhibition about the elevated love of transgender people.
  • Martine Næss Johansen, an Oslo-based author and SLAM poet, has contributed with a work of art specially crafted for the exhibition.

Joint forces

The exhibition is a collaboration between Contemporary Art [Oslo] ( and the Museum of Cultural History, University of Oslo. Thanks to the National Museums of World Culture ( in Stockholm and the Preus Museum ( in Horten for lending artwork, and the National Norwegian Archive for Queer History ( for invaluable advice and input.

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Published June 16, 2018 4:09 PM - Last modified Apr. 26, 2022 4:02 PM