Albertine Prostitution Relief on City Hall in Oslo, Norway - Encircle Photos

26 Albertine Prostitution Relief on City Hall in Oslo, Norway

Numerous statues and reliefs surrounding the Oslo City Hall portray images of legends, historic figures, and allegorical figures of mythological deities plus Norwegian citizens. Perhaps the most interesting is this artwork located near an east bay window called Albertine. The carving by Alfred Seland shows a high-society gentleman with a cane and top hat standing on a ledge next to a proper appearing woman. She is secretly holding hands with a commoner who is hiding around the corner. You might assume this gesture represents an extramarital affair. It turns out the woman is a prostitute, the john is on her right and her pimp is on the left. The image is based on the novel “Albertine” by Norwegian author Christian Krohg. Within days after it was published in 1886, all copies of the book were confiscated and she was jailed. The ensuing uproar led to laws criminalizing prostitution.


Rådhusplassen 1, 0037 Oslo, Norway


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