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Public defence: Anne Haaning

Hanne Haaning will defend her PhD project Half Hidden digitally on Zoom.

Anne Haaning is a PhD candidate with the artistic research programme at Oslo National Academy of the Arts in collaboration with the Academy of Arts, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, 2016-2020.

Join Zoom here
The defence will be in English.

Due to Covid19-regulations the final presentation of the PhD project Half Hidden was assessed remotely by the committee. For this reason, the documentation of the work had to be particularly thorough. All of this material is available on

Half Hidden

In this project, I have sought to uncover hidden structures and histories imbedded in technology. In the work I have focused on a specific history and its inherent structural implications – it was generated through the prism of the now extinct mineral cryolite, extracted from Greenlandic soil by Denmark. Through my art practise, I have been exploring analogical correspondences at a specific intersection of technology, myth and colonialism through a method that employs investigation of the ontological context of digital image production and technology in general.

Denmark extracted the rare mineral cryolite in Greenland during the years 1857–1985. Essential to the mass production of aluminium, cryolite proved critical for the shipbuilding and aviation industries during World Wars I and II. The mineral was so important that the cryolite mine was put under US administration during the German occupation of Denmark in World War II. But this history has virtually been erased from the collective memory and consciousness of the Danes. Today, the flooded mine is a scar in the Greenlandic landscape covered by a pervasive mirroring water plane concealing a significant part of the Danish-Greenlandic colonial history.

The artistic results of this project – which span video installation, sculpture and print – all relate to the context of blind spots, and the content of the work references this history of territorial domination, extraction and colonialism.
My research as art practise is situated in between these two things; the work is negotiating ways of revealing these blinds spots along with the actual event – a performative strategy that is a form of “half-hiding”.

The final presentation of the work happened in Tromsø Kunstforening in July, 2020. This exhibition included Half Hidden – the video installation, Polarizer – a large polarising sculpture, An Archive of Uncertainties – a group of works and a series of blue prints. Part of these works were first exhibited in Den Frie in Copenhagen in 2019, and a spinn-off project Search Quarry was exhibited in die raum in Berlin in 2019.

Mike Sperlinger, Professor of theory and writing, Oslo National Academy of the Arts
Nina Wakeford, Artist and Sociologist
Markus Degerman, Dekan, kunst og håndverk, Oslo National Academy of the Arts

Committee Members:
Pedro Gomez-Egana, Professor of Sculpture and Installation, Oslo National Academy of the Arts
Sidsel Meineche Hansen, Artist based in London, UK
Katrina Palmer, Associate Professor, Ruskin School of Art, University of Oxford, UK