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Animal sculptures are exhibited in the park at Oscarshall in Oslo this summer

Her Majesty The Queen of Norway will attend the official opening of the exhibition of Davide Rivalta's sculptures at Oscarshall summer palace at Bygdø in Oslo on 3 May at 6 p.m.

From 4 May and over the summer, the public will have the opportunity to visit the park and experience the sculptures for free within the opening hours of Oscarshall. The exhibition is following the State Visit of the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella to Norway last year and is a collaboration between the Italian Embassy, the Italian Cultural Institute and the Royal Collections in Norway.  

Accreditation form (in Norwegian)

A park walk among "wild animals" 

The open-air exhibition offers a park walk among more than ten life-size bronze and fiberglass animal sculptures created by Italian artist Davide Rivalta. In the terrain and in the romantic park, the public will meet two chimpanzees, an eagle, wolves, and a white horse, and outside Oscarshall's main entrance the symbolic lion will be presented. At the viewpoint, a sculpture of the bear is presented as if it waits for the audience to linger.  And three rhinos can be observed in a surprising place.

Animal sculptures by the Italian artist Davide Rivalta are exhibited at Oscarshall this summer. Photo: Øivind Möller Bakken, The Royal Court

To document and reproduce the animal's behaviors and habits, Rivalta observes the animals in captivity. With his sculptures, the artist creates individual portraits of the animals. And when the sculptures are presented in an exhibition the animals will be placed away from captivity where the artist first met them. The park at Oscarshall is not a wild landscape but is a cultivated landscape park. Nevertheless, it was created after the romantic idea of the 1800s that the park should be perceived as wild. The park can be seen as a wild, cultivated landscape where the animals of Rivalta can exist freely.

This is the first time Rivalta's sculptures have been exhibited in Norway. Previously, he has exhibited at the Palazzo del Quirinale and Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea in Rome, Lucan House in Dublin, and the Triennale di Milano.

Strong ties to Italy

Oscarshall is the first building in Norway created and presented as a contemporary museum and palace of Norwegian art. Norwegian contemporary artists of the time, such as Adolph Tidemand, Hans Gude, Joachim Frich, Hans Michelsen and Christopher Borch, were commissioned to create works for decoration of the rooms.

This summer, the tradition of promoting contemporary art will be continued, and the exhibition is a collaboration between the Royal Collections, the Italian Embassy, and the Italian Cultural Institute in Oslo.

Animal sculptures by the Italian artist Davide Rivalta are exhibited at Oscarshall this summer. Photo: Øivind Möller Bakken, The Royal Court

Ties to Italy are strong. The idea for the project arose in connection with the state visit from Italy in 2023. In addition to the fact that the artist is Italian, the placement of the sculptures within the parc also has a central link to Italy. One of the founders of Oscarshall, Queen Joséphine of Norway and Sweden, was originally Princess of Bologna – the city where Davide Rivalta now lives and works. Together with her husband, King Oscar I, it was Queen Joséphine that initiated the construction of Oscarshall in the mid-1800s.

Opening event

The season opening of Oscarshall and the opening of the exhibition will be marked with speeches and a performance by the national choreographic centre Aterballetto on Friday 3 May at 18.00. Aterballetto will also hold several ballet performances for the public on May 4. Aterballetto performs a selection of "MicroDances". These are short choreographies created in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Italy as part of the project "Italia Danza".

From the ZPC Microdanze. Foto: Neven Petrovic.


The press is invited to cover the opening event and must apply for accreditation by Thursday, May 2 at 12 noon.

Accreditation form (in Norwegian)


  • 17.30: Latest attendance for accredited press at the gate of Oscarshall

  • 6 p.m.: The opening event begins. Speeches, light servings, and performance of three ballets at the Aterballetto.

Contact information:

Opens to the public

On Saturday, May 4, Oscarshall opens to the public. This day is marked with three performances of the Aterballetto, at 11.00, 13.00 and 15.00, and tours of the Oscarshall summer palace and in the park at 12.00 and 14.00.



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Opening Hours Oscarshall

Oscarshall is open to visitors in the summer. The 2024 season lasts from 4 May until 15 September and the opening hours are Thursday-Sunday from 11:00 until 16:00.

The tours last about 40 minutes and start at 11:00, 12:00 (in English), 13:00, 14:00 (in English) and 15:00. 

Please note: 
Oscarshall will be closed to visitors 17 May, 10 August and 5 September.

Due to closed events, Oscarshall may be closed to the public at certain times during the season. These dates are announced here and on Facebook.


Tickets are available in the former kitchen building at Oscarshall. Photo: Sven Gj. Gjeruldsen, the Royal Court