Sykkelfabrikken (The Bicycle Factory)
In 1989 14 artists from the region around Sandnes decided to look for somewhere to establish a studio collective.
They had several vacant factory buildings to choose from, and from these they decided on Øglænd's former bicycle factory
in Holbergs gate in the centre of Sandnes. These premises were both pleasant and spacious. However, the transformation needed
was considerable, and two years would pass before the artists could properly start to work with their art. They called the
building "Sykkelfabrikken" (The Bicycle Factory). It was administered by Rogaland Kunstsenter, whose board included a representative
from Sandnes municipality. The county and urban municipality provided funding. In the beginning, Sykkelfabrikken employed its own
secretary. It was a period of considerable stimulating and varied activity that included theatrical and musical performances,
seminars and exhibitions. "Sykkelfabrikken" hosted many visiting artists (artists in residence) who were entitled to use its 50
square metre monumental workspace. Exciting artists from all over the world worked and had exhibitions there. In the course of time,
Sykkelfabrikken became well-known inside Norway and abroad.
Stasjon K Artist Studios
In 2002, after 15 good years in Holbergsgate, the artists at Sykkelfabrikken were notified that the building would soon be demolished.
It was time to start hunting for new premises which would combine functionality and affordability. That was no easy task. Collaboration
with Rogaland Kunstsenter had come to an end. Finally, Sandnes municipality came to the rescue with an offer to let the artists rent
the old fire station in Sandnes. These premises had also been used by the old municipal library. They had then stood empty for some years
and had subsequently served as a club for teenagers. Extensive redecoration was needed, and some new partition walls had to be erected.
The studio collective was named Stasjon K: a reminder of the fact that the premises had once housed the town's old fire station. It was
quite a change for the artists to move from their previous workshops at Sykkelfabrikken, with their spacious floors and high ceilings,
to small offices with ordinary ceilings. Nor was there space for everyone, so some of the artists for whom these rooms were not suitable
had to find studios elsewhere. But the interior temperature at Stasjon K was fine, and the fact that the artists each had their own closed
studios made it easier for them to concentrate. The new occupants somehow had to adjust the size of their work to the space they had been
allocated. And despite the fact that space was limited, these studios have spawned artwork for public buildings such as schools,
kindergartens and nursing homes. The artists at Stasjon K have held joint exhibitions, and various groups and clubs are regularly invited
to visit. Some artists have moved out while new ones have moved in. The most suitable space for producing larger works is the monumental
workshop, one of the old fire engine garages. The arts centre KinoKino now allocates this space to artists in residence from several countries.
These bring with them the international impulses that are a vital element in any good community of artists. Stasjon K and KinoKino form an
important centre of culture in Langgata, the main street in the centre of Sandnes.