Tungtvann utstilling SAR 00958 1920 Foto Linn Maria Larsen


The history from ARKIVET Peace and Human Rights Centre, the former State Archive in Kristiansand, is conveyed through our permanent exhibition, temporary and virtual exhibitions.

ARKIVET has created a living piece of Norwegian war history in what was the Gestapo headquarters in Kristiansand during the Second World War. The horrors of German occupation and the treatment of members of the Norwegian resistance are represented in text, images and animations.

This is the home to the darkest, most gruesome war history in the region. Norwegians were tortured, mutilated and beaten to death while undergoing what the Gestapo described as ‘heavy questioning’. The exhibitions attempts to create a greater understanding of how individual choices and actions can affect the development of the entire society.

The stories of resistance and imprisonment are a source of hope, reflection and education for the people of today.


  • Focal Point ARKIVET: opened April 9, 2016. This exhibition is permanent and conveys what happened at ARKIVET and in Agder during the war years. The exhibition's essential goal is to provide an understanding of the significance that individual actions can have for the development of society.
  • War Sailors in a Global War: opened June 18, 2019. This exhibition shows the vital role of the war sailors in a worldwide war. It also shows their attempts at contact with their families at home and the time in captivity. The history of the war sailors is in this exhibition linked to the account of the house.
  • Jon Michelet's Library: is an exhibition that conveys the authors work on the history of the merchant seafarers in World War Two, the so-called war sailors. The exhibition shows around 600 books and other material that Michelet used from 2007–2018, whilst writing both non-fiction and the six-part bestseller novel series En Sjøens helt, about a fictional war sailor named Halvor Skramstad. In the exhibition, there is also a wall depicting different aspects of the war sailor history.
  • The Power of the Needle is an embroidery installation composed of individual embroideries. "The power of the needle" is about strengthening women's awareness, reintroducing embroidery as a form of expression, and showing the meaning it can have.
  • Books Discovered Once Again is a virtual exhibition about confiscated literature during World War II. The collection is the result of a collaboration with the National Library of the Czech Republic. Explore online.
  • Skin Remembers: Stories and Identities of the few is a virtual exhibition where individuals with a minority background from Iraq, Palestine, Syria and Sàpmi share their thoughts and feelings on identity. Explore online.
  • The Power of the Needle is a virtual exhibition about how embroidery can be used to express identity and cultural heritage. Explore online.