Since KORO was founded in 1977, its main task has been to execute art projects for new government-owned buildings. In 1998, the scheme was reinforced when the decision was made to automatically allocate a percentage of budgets to art for all governmental building projects. This percentage varies from 0.5 to 1.5 percent, depending on the type of building, its accessibility, the number of users and the extent to which it is a public building. Other factors of importance are the significance and symbolic value of the building.
The funds allocated from the budget for individual building projects are then assigned to KORO. KORO executes the art projects and is also responsible for communication and principal management of the government’s collection of art in public spaces. KORO also performs the same function for the Norwegian Armed Forces, but on the basis of a separate agreement.
The automatic allocation of funds from budgets does not apply to new buildings constructed by public sector corporations, governmental foundations, etc. As such, companies such as the Norwegian National Rail Administration, the health trusts, Norway Post, Telenor and Avinor are not covered by the scheme. Nonetheless, companies such as the above do tend to allocate funds to art as part of building projects, and these art projects are frequently assigned to KORO for execution.
As an extension of the art scheme, KORO is awarded and executes extraordinary assignments for governmental authorities. Examples of these assignments include monuments and memorial sites.
KORO chooses the most appropriate method for the organisation of individual assignments. The most common method is to establish a composite art committee directed by one or more art consultants employed by KORO. In line with general changes to working methods within art, we are currently witnessing a trend towards more extensive use of projects managed by curators. With such projects, professional expertise is provided by both freelance curators and KORO’s own staff. Irrespective of the method of organisation, the most important tasks remain communication and cooperation with the receiving institutes, the building owners, architects and the actual artists creating the works of art.