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Bergen National Academy of the Arts - Main Building Strømgaten 1

Bergen National Academy of the Arts (Norwegian: Kunsthøgskolen i Bergen) or KHiB is one of the two independent institutions of higher learning in the visual arts and design in Norway. It is located in Bergen.

KHiB has three departments: Department of Fine Art, Department of Design and Department of Specialised Art. There are 300 students and around 100 staff members. Students can take a three-year Bachelor degree and a two-year Master degree in the following areas:

  • Visual Art
  • Interior Architecture
  • Furniture Design
  • Room Design
  • Visual Communications
  • Photography
  • Printmaking
  • Ceramics
  • Textiles

A range of continuing education courses are also available.




Department of design

File:Marken 37 Bergen NO.jpg
Bergen National Academy of the Arts - Workshops, Café and Main Lecture hall in Marken 37

Department of Design offers students BA and MA degrees in Visual Communication, and Furniture- and Spatial Design/Interior Architecture.

  • Visual communication is written communication (typography), visual communication (illustration in a wider sense) and interactive communication (from web design to various forms of interactive design), for print and digital media, both static and dynamic.
  • Furniture- and Spatial Design/Interior Architecture is about creating spatial solutions and constructions for open and enclosed public and private spaces. Students design furniture and other items for industrial manufacture as well as various fixed/moveable items related to rooms and their functions. Another part of the programme concerns exhibition and museum design.

Department of Specialised Art

Studies at the Department of Specialised Art address the wide field of what traditionally is called visual and applied art. In the view of the department it is essential – and a challenge – to operate in this highly charged area where distinguishing boundaries are neither settled nor sealed. Specialisation refers to the approach within a discipline or subject area, not to the particular means of artistic expression, the art object or work.

What sets the department apart then is specialisation in a given area along with the emphasis on practical work, approaches and techniques.

The Department contains four Subject Areas:

  • Photography
  • Printmaking
  • Ceramics
  • Textiles.

The strength these subject areas comes from drawing on theory and traditional and modern techniques to inform students’ individual assignments, providing a pathway to higher artistic proficiency.

Department of Fine Art

Bergen National Academy of the Arts - Department of Fine Art

Studies at the Department of Fine Art introduce students to art in the wider sense as a platform from which to develop their own artistic practice. The most important part of the programme is the development of a personal work of art which takes account of wider cultural and social issues. Students will learn how to present, contextualise and critique their own and others’ artistic work.

Art is a dynamic and innovative field of activity and study, also in terms of the media, materials and critical debate. Dept of Fine Art offers programmes in two-dimensional and three-dimensional visual art, electronic media and performance art. We encourage fearless discussion of tendencies and changes in the contemporary art scene, culture and wider society.


Art education has long traditions in Bergen, as the first school of art was established here in 1772, modelled on the Academy of Art in Copenhagen. The present college, Kunsthøgskolen in Bergen, is a fairly new institution merging the two former institutions “Vestlandets kunstakademi” and “Statens høgskole for kunsthåndverk og design” into one. This happened in 1996. A part of the merger benefits was to join all students and staff under one roof.

The Norwegian authorities promised a new collage building for this purpose, and the renowned architect group Snøhetta have been assigned to develop the project. Originally planned for 2009, the concept has been redrawn to meet budget demands from the Ministry of Education and Research. The planned date for completion is 2012 (proposed).


Bergen National Academy of the Arts - Library and student workshops - Marken 34

There are two libraries on the KHiB campus. Both are highliy specialized, offering a wide range of books and periodicals within art and design. Although primarily for students and staff, our libraries also welcome the general public. Books from our library are listed in the BIBSYS search system used by higher education institutions in Norway.

One of the libraries is located in Marken 34, next to the main building. The other library is in C. Sundtssgate 53 with the Dept of Fine Arts.


Bergen National Academy of the Arts is currently located in five different buildings in the center of Bergen. Our main building and reception area is in Strømgaten 1, just across from the Bergen Railway Station. In the vicinity of the main building (around the pedestrian street Marken) are two buildings shared by Dept of design and Dept of Spesialised Art; Marken 37 and Marken 34. There are also workshops and classrooms in Kong Oscarsgate 62. The Dept of Fine Art is located in C. Sundtsgate 53 at Nordnes.

External links

Coordinates: 60°23′27.7″N 5°19′58.8″E / 60.391028°N 5.333°E / 60.391028; 5.333


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