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Torbjørn Kvasbø - Artists + Designers - Hostler Burrows

Torbjørn Kvasbø (Norwegian, b. 1953) is an internationally acclaimed ceramic artist, with a career spanning several decades. Kvasbø’s practice challenges and pushes his own personal boundaries, as well as the physical possibilities of the medium. In his ongoing Stacked series, he reimagines the archetypical form of the vessel, creating upwardly spiraling sculptures from stacked tubes of extruded clay, often on a monumental scale. In the artist’s words, “My work process in the medium of clay offers a lot of resistance, and it reveals to me the forces over which I have no control – the incalculable elements of my inner being. My emotions and feelings are physically discharged into the work, and they become actual experiences themselves.” Through this transference of energy into the material, Kvasbø continues in the centuries-old tradition of the artist as alchemist.

Torbjørn Kvasbø lives and works in Venabygd, Norway. He was Head of the Ceramics Department at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden from 1996-2000, and Head of the Ceramic and Glass Department at Konstfack, Stockholm, Sweden from 2000-2008. His work has been exhibited extensively, including solo exhibitions at institutions throughout the world. Kvasbø is represented in the permanent collections of Designmuseum Danmark, Copenhagen; Nationalmuseum, Stockholm, Sweden; The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Oslo, Norway; The National Museum of Decorative Arts, Trondheim, Norway; The Röhsska Museum, Gothenburg, Sweden; Museum of Modern Ceramic Art, Gifu Ceramics-Park Mino, Gifu, Japan; Museo Internazionale delle Ceramiche, Faenza, Italy; Musée National Adrien Dubouché, Limoges, France; Lillehammer Art Museum, Norway; KODE Art Museums of Bergen, Norway; Icheon World Ceramic Center, Icheon, South Korea; and the Auckland Museum Institute, Auckland, New Zealand, among many others.



Norwegian, b. 1953

2018-2024    President of the International Academy of Ceramics
2014-2020    Vice President of the International Academy of Ceramics
2005-2014    Member of the Council of the IAC
1990             Member of the International Academy of Ceramics (IAC)
1978             Norwegian Association of Arts and Crafts

1975-1978    Bergen School of Applied Arts (Bergen Academy of Art and
                     Design), Norway

2020             Taoxichuan Museum, Jingdezhen, China
2019             GICB2019, Korea. Sept. 27.-Nov. 24.
2018             The Byre, Ringebu Parsonage (Fjøset, Ringebu Prestegard)
2017             The Byre, Ringebu Parsonage (Fjøset, Ringebu Prestegard)
                     Kunsthall Grenland, Porsgrunn, Norway
2013             Lillehammer Art Museum, Lillehammer Norway
                     Drammen Art Museum, Drammen Norway
2010             Kunstnerforbundet, Oslo, Norway
2009             Trøndelag Centre for Contemporary Art, Trondheim, Norway
                     Gallery Zink, Lillehammer, Norway
2005             Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, Oslo, Norway
2004             West Norway Museum of Decorative Arts, Bergen, Norway
                     Kunstbanken, Hamar Norway
2003             Bomuldsfabriken Art Hall, Arendal, Norway
2001             MIC, Museum of International Ceramics, Faenza, Italy
                     Galerie DM Sarver, Paris, France
                     Gallery Inger Molin, Stockholm, Sweden
2000             Kunstnerforbundet, Oslo Norway
1998             Gallery Björnen, Stockholm, Sweden
1997             Gallery Nørby, Copenhagen, Denmark
1995             Main Street Gallery, Napa, California, USA
1994             Leedy-Voulkos Gallery, Kansas City, MO, USA
                     The Works Art Festival, Edmonton, Canada
1993             Kunstnerforbundet, Oslo, Norway
                     Hordaland Art Centre, Bergen, Norway
                     Gallery Nørby, Copenhagen, Denmark
1992             Hopkins Hall Gallery, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA
1991             The Works Art Festival, Edmonton, Canada
1990             Blås och Knåda, Stockholm, Sweden
                     National Museum of Decorative Arts, Trondheim, Norway
1987             Hordaland Art Centre, Bergen, Norway
1986             Kunstnerforbundet, Oslo, Norway
1985             National Museum of Decorative Arts, Trondheim, Norway

2012            “The Annual Exhibition of Norwegian Crafts,” Norway

2019             Gallery Format, Nomad Venice, Italy
                     Museum Angewandte Kunst, “House of Norway” Frankfurt am
                     Main, Germany
                     SKMU Kristiansand
                     Officine Saffi, Morfologia delle Meraviglie, Italy
                     Porselensmuseet Porsgrunn. Jan. 17.-March 17.
                     KODE Bergen May 10.-Sept. 15.
2018             Sevres Ceramic Museum, Paris. Sept. 23.-April 1.
                     About Clay, Exhibition of European Ceramic Art in Fiskars, Finland
2017             4th Documentary Exhibition of Fine Arts/ Stress Field.
                     Hubei Museum of Art, Hubei, China
                     Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale (GICB2017), Rep. of
2016             Officine Saffi, Milano, Italy. “Geometry of Chaos”.
                     Carlo Zauli-Torbjørn Kvasbø
                     Liling Ceramics Valley Museum “The Mode-Int. Ceramics Art
                     Invitational”, China
                     Hangzhou Int. ContemporaryCeramic Art Biennale, China
                     “Inspired”, The Scandinavian Center/TaoXicuang Museum
                     Jingdezhen, China
                     International Trade Fair in Munich, “Modern Masters”
2015             International Wood-Firing Festival, Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts,
                     “Beyond G(l)aze, KODE2, Bergen Norway
                     “Transformator”, Galleri Format, Oslo Norway
                     “Transformator”, Hydrogenfabrikken Fredrikstad, Norway
2014             SOFA, Chicago, USA
                     “Transformator”. Bomuldsfabriken Kunsthall, Arendal, Norway
                     European Ceramic Context, Bornholm, Denmark
                     “Attention: Craft”, Liljevalchs, Stockholm, Sweden
                     Beyond G(l)aze, Jinji Lake Art Museum, Suzhou, China
2013             Revelations, Grand Palais, Paris, France.
2013             “Collect”, Saatchi Gallery, London, Great Britain
2012             “Collect”, Saatchi Gallery, London, Great Britain
                     ”Less Colour”, Rogaland Art Centre, Stavanger, Norway
2011             “Collect”, Saatchi Gallery, London, Great Britain
2010             “Le Cru et le Cuit” Galerie Favardin & De Verneuil, Paris, France
                     “Clay Energy Gulgong”, Masters Exhibition, Cudgegong Gallery,
                      Gulgong, NSW, Australia
                     “Collect”, Saatchi Gallery, London, Great Britain
                     “Intonation”, Deidesheim, Germany
                     “Taiwan Ceramics Biennale”, Yingge Ceramics Museum, Yingge,
                      New Taipei City, Taiwan
2009             “British Ceramic Biennial”, Airspace Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent,
                     Great Britain
                     “Cheongju International Craft Biennale“, Cheongju, South Korea
                     “Intonation“, Deidesheim, Germany
                     “Tendenser 2009”, Gallery F15, Moss, Norway
2007             “Terres Extremes”, Maison de la Ceramique Contemporaine,
                     Giroussens, France:
                     Museu del Càntir d´Argentona, Barcelona, Spain
                     Keramik-Museum Westerwald, Germany
2005             “Typical Norwegian?”, Vigeland-Museet Oslo, Norway; Museum für Kunst und        Gewerbe, Hamburg, Germany
2005             ”Strata“, Skulpturens Hus, Stockholm, Sweden
2004             “Norwegen heute-keramisch“, Hetjens-Museum, Düsseldorf,
2003             “NOW&NOW”, World Ceramic Biennale 2003, Icheon,
                     South Korea
2002             “Keramik aus Norwegen“, Galerie Handwerk, Munich, Germany
2001             “Fifty Years of the Archie Bray Influence”, Holter Museum of Art,
                     MT, USA
                     “1st World Ceramic Biennale 2001”, Icheon, South Korea
                     “The 52st Int. Ceramic Art Competition”, Faenza, Italy
2000             “Ceramic Circus 2000”, Les Printemps des Poties, Bandol, France
                     “Norwegian Alternatives”, IADB-Cultural Center,
                     Washington D.C., USA
                     “Sidney Myer International Ceramic Award”, Shepparton Art
                     Museum, Shepparton VIC, Australia
1999             “The 51st International Ceramic Art Competition”, Faenza, Italy
                     “Norwegian Contemporary Ceramics”, Millenium Symposium,
                     Amsterdam, The Netherlands
                     “Different Stokes”, Invitational Exhibition, University of Iowa,
                     University Heights,  IA, USA
1998             “Stars”, Galleri Inger Molin, Stockholm, Sweden
                     “The Fletcher Challenge Award”, Auckland War Memorial
                     Museum, Auckland, New Zealand
                     “Ceramic Art 1988-1998”, Danmarks Keramikmuseum
                     Grimmerhus, Middelfart, Denmark
                     “Nordic Ceramic Triennale ´98”, The Swedish History Museum,
                     Stockholm, Sweden
                     “Sweden-Norway-Expo Lära”. Västerås Art Museum,Västerås,
1997             ”Ceramic Expressionism. 7 Norwegian Ceramicist”. Danmarks Keramikmuseum     Grimmerhus, Middelfart, Denmark
1997             Archie Bray Foundation NCECA, Green Valley Library Gallery,
                     Las Vegas, NV, USA
                     “The Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award”, Award of Merit,
                     Auckland War Memorial Museum, Auckland, New Zealand
1996             “Resident Artist Exhibition”, Archie Bray Foundation, Helena, MT,
                     “Scandinavian Images”, University of Durham, Durham,
                     Great Britain
                     “Italy-Norway”, Centro Esposivito della Rocca Paolina, Perugia,
                     Museum voor Sierkunst, Gent, Belgium
                     Badisches Landesmuseum, Karlsruhe, Germany
                     “Neue Wege International”, Saarländisches Künstlerhaus,
                     Saarbrücken, Germany
                     “Woodfired Ceramics”, Loes and Rainier International Ceramics,
                     Deventer, The Netherlands
1995             “The Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award”, Auckland War
                     Memorial Museum, Auckland, New Zealand
                     “Woodstack”. The Gallery of Visual Arts, University of Montana,
                     Missoula, MT, USA
                     “NCECA Clay National ´95”, F.R.Weisman Art Museum,
                     Minneapolis, MN, USA
1994-96        “Nordic Images”, Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, Oslo,
                     Helsinki Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, Finland;
                     Nationalmuseum; Stockholm, Sweden: Museum of Decorative Art
                     and Design; 
                     Copenhagen, Denmark: Röhsska Museum of Decorative Arts
                     and Design,
                     Gothenburg, Sweden: West Norway Museum of Decorative Art,
                     Bergen, Norway: National Museum of Decorative  Arts,
                     Trondheim, Norway
1994             “Fire Men: Masters of the Anagama Kiln”, Leedy-Voulkos Gallery,
                     Kansas City, MO, USA
                     “The Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award”, Auckland War
                     Memorial Museum, Auckland, New Zealand
                     “In Touch”, international contemporary crafts, part of the Cultural
                     Programme of the XVII Olympic Winter Games 1994, Maihaugen,
                     Lillehammer, Norway
1993             “Mastermeeting”, Ringebu Workshop 1993. Museum of Decorative
                     Arts and Design, Oslo, Norway
                     Pulverturm am Schlosswall, Artothek in der Peterstrasse,
                     Oldenburg, Germany.
                     “The Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award”, Judges Commendation,
                     Auckland War Memorial Museum, Auckland, New Zealand
1992             “Hot Clay from Cold Climates”, North Project, Art Evo Gallery,
                     Edmonton, Canada
1990-92        “Contemporary Norwegian Ceramics”, touring exhibition,
                     Keramion, Frechen; Germany: Kunstgewerbemuseum, Berlin;
                     Germany: Schloss Gottorf, Schleswig;
                     Germany: Polytechnic Gallery, Newcastle;
                     Great Britain: Aberystwyth Arts Centre,
                     Aberystwyth, Great Britain: Crafts Council;
                     Dublin, Ireland: Arts Council Gallery, Belfast, Ireland;
                     World Expo, Sevilla, Spain;
                     Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, NY, USA;
                     National Museum of Ceramic Art, Baltimore, MD, USA
1991             “47. Concorso Internazionale Della Ceramica D`arte”, Faenza, Italy


Arts Council Norway
Auckland Museum Institute, Auckland, New Zealand
Daum Museum of Contemporary Art, Sedalia, MO, USA
Designmuseum Danmark, Copenhagen, Denmark
Drammens Museum
Dr. Anthony Rucela Collection, Kansas City, MO, USA
Dr. Hans Thiemann Collection, Hamburg Germany
Icheon World Ceramic Center, Icheon, South Korea
KODE Art Museums of Bergen, Norway
Leedy-Voulkos Gallery, Kansas City, MO, USA
Lillehammer Art Museum, Norway
Lotte Reimers Stiftung Kunstzentrum, Deidesheim, Germany
Maurice Lambiotte Collection, Paris, France
Musée National Adrien Dubouché, Limoges, France
Mr. And Mrs. Inge Münz Collection, Saarbrücken, Germany
Mr. and Mrs. William Van Keppel Collection, Kansas City, MO, USA
Museo Internazionale delle Ceramiche, Faenza, Italy
Museum of Modern Ceramic Art, Gifu Ceramics-Park Mino, Gifu, Japan
Nationalmuseum, Stockholm, Sweden
Norges Bank, London, Great Britain
Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Norway
Oppland County, Norway
Riksgalleriet, The National Touring Exhibitions of Norway
Ringebu Municipality, Norway
The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Oslo, Norway
The National Museum of Decorative Arts, Trondheim, Norway
The Röhsska Museum, Gothenburg, Sweden
Trondheim Municipality, Norway
Swedish Art Council, Sweden
SKMU Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, Kristiandsand, Norway

2008-2011    External examiner Royal College of Art, London, Great Britain
2000-2008    Professor and Head of Ceramics & Glass Departement at Konstfack 
                     – University College of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm, Sweden
1996-2000    Professor and Head of Ceramic Art Departement at HDK –
                     School of Design and Crafts, University of Gothenburg, Sweden
1998             Judge of the Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award, Auckland,
                     New Zealand
1985             Guest teacher, external examiner for diploma and special subject
                     examinations, member of boards, member of appoinment boards
                     for lectures/professors, Oslo
                     National Academy of Arts and Bergen Academy of Art and Design,

Silica Triennial, Kecskemèt, Hungary
60 Faenza Prize, MIC Faenza, Italy.
Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale 2017, Korea
Event Clay Gulgong, Australia
Casa dell`Architettura, Rome, Italy
2010 Taiwan Ceramics Biennale, New Taipei City, Taiwan
British Ceramic Biennial 2009, Marl Hole project, Stoke-on-Trent, Great Britain
Intonation, Deidesheim, Germany
Central Academy of Fine Art, CAFA, Beijing, China
Peters Valley Crafts Centre, Layton,, NJ, USA
Cheongju International Craft Biennale, Cheongju, South Korea
Naori Wood Fired Ceramics, KO-EURO, South Korea
Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA
San Jose State University, SAN Jose, CA, USA
San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, CA, USA
Chicago Art Institute, Chicago, IL, USA
Mendocino Art Center, Mendocino, CA, USA
Napa Valley College, CA, USA
Iowa University, Iowa City, IA, US.
Archie Bray Foundation, Helena, MT, USA
Montana University, Missoula, MT, USA
Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO, USA
University of Ohio, Athens, OH, USA
Red Deer College, Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
“The Works Visual Arts Festival”, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Alberta University, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Banff Centre for the Arts, Alberta, Canada
“NCECA”, Tempe, Arizona, AZ, USA
“NCECA”, Philadelphia, PA, USA
“NCECA”, New Orleans, LA, USA
University of Industrial Arts, Helsinki, Finland
Konstfack College of Art, Stockholm, Sweden
Kent State University, Kent, OH, USA
Kolding College of Applied Arts, Kolding, Denmark
Kecskemét International Ceramics Studio, Kecskemét, Hungary
Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award, Auckland, New Zealand
Auckland Studio Potters Centre, Auckland, New Zealand
Clay-Sculpt Gulgong, Janet Mansfield, Gulgong, NSW, Australia
“The Edge”, Perth, WA, Australia
“Cotta terra”, Perugia, Italy
Faenza, Italy
“Les Printemps des Poitiers”, Bandol, France
“Recontres La Borne”, La Borne, France
Handwerkskammer für München und Oberbayern, Munich, Germany
World Ceramic Biennale, South Korea
The Sculptor Factory, Jingdezhen, China

2017             Grand Prize at the Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale
                     (GICB2017), Rep. of   Korea
2012             Prize for best art work, The Annual Exhibition of Arts and Crafts
                     2012, Norway
2010             Janet Mansfield Fellowship Award, Australia
2009             The Norwegian Association for Arts and Crafts Honourable Prize
                     Ringebu Municipality Culture Prize
2008             Villeroy & Boch Gustavsberg ceramics grant.
2001             Silver Prize, 1st World Ceramic Biennale 2001 (GICB2001), 
                     Rep. of Korea
1999             Premio Faenza, 1. prize in the 51. Premio Faenza
                     Concorso Internationale, Italy
1997             Embryo 1997, awarded for the best art education in Sweden
                     Award of Merit, Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award, New Zealand
1995             The Gudbrandsdalen Cultural Award
1993             Judge´s Commendation, Fletcher Challenge Ceramics Award,
                     New Zealand

1992, Kvasbø, Torbjørn: “Don’t ever get a steady job”, in Ceramics Monthly,
         April issue, pp. 41-48
1993, Danbolt, Gunnar: “Between Nature and Civilisation. Ceramic Art of
        Torbjørn Kvasbø”, in Ceramics: Art & Perception, no. 13, pp. 3-7, 89-91.
1996, Broadwell, Carolyn: “Torbjørn Kvasbø”, in Ceramic Art magazine, no. 10,
        pp.84-89. (Taiwan)
1999, Veiteberg, Jorunn: “Torbjørn Kvasbø”, in Kvasbø, Torbjørn and Veiteberg,
        Jorunn (eds.), 1999: Norwegian Contemporary Ceramics, exhib. cat., Amsterdam
        under Ceramic Millenium: Leadership Congress for the Ceramic Arts, pp. 30-31.
2000, Dewald, Gabi: “Ich habe keine Angst”, in Keramik Magazin no. 1,
        pp. 24-30.
2000, Andreani, Carole: ”Torbjørn Kvasbø – Une dramaturgie de l`homme et de
        la nature”, in Revue Ceramique et du Verre, no. 113, July-August, pp. 34-39.
2000, Brühl, Birgit: “Der Norweger Torbjørn Kvasbø”, in Neue Keramik no. 5
        Sept/Oct., pp 270-271.
2000, Minogue, Coll and Sanderson, Robert: Wood-fired Ceramics
        Contemporary Practices, London: A & B Black, pp. 78-80.
2001, Jonson, Lotta: ”The Universe of Clay”, in Form no. 4, pp. 62-67.
2003, Torbjørn Kvasbø – ceramics, catalogue, Arendal: Bomuldsfabriken
2004, Dewald, Gabi: „Über das Unbezähmbare“, in Keramik magazin, no. 2,
        pp. 22-25.
2004, Veiteberg, Jorunn: “Making the invisible visible”, in Kunsthåndverk, no. 91,
       1/2004, pp. 22-23.
2004, Stensman, Mailis: „Brandens mästare“, in Konsthantverk, no. 2, pp. 30-35.
2007, Sempere, Emili: Arnold Annen. Una exposició extraordinària, in Revista
       Cerámica Contemporania no 31, pp 72-75.
2007, Lambiotte, Maurice and Andrèani, Carole: Contemporary Pottery:
      Collection Maurice Lambiotte, Paris: Norma, pp. 134-137.
2008, Battle, Michel: “Terres Extremes”, in Ceramics Monthly vol. 55, April,
      pp. 20-22
2010, Harrod Tanya. “The everyday and the numinous”.  Contemporary British
     studio ceramics : the Grainer Collection, redigert av Annie Carlano, 11-30.
     New Haven: Yale University Press.
2013, Jorunn Veiteberg and Kerstin Wickman: “Torbjørn Kvasbø Ceramics –
     Between the Possible and the Impossible”. Arnoldsche Art Publishers.
     ISBN 978-3-89790-384-5

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