We don’t need a museum for conserving varieties, what we want is to grow then…
-Ancient grain farmer Johan Sward, Hadeland, Norway

Here you see a public bakehouse and an ancient grain field- an art project called Flatbread Society by the artist group Futurefarmers.  The bakehouse is inspired by a Colin Archer rescue boat to symbolize the act of “rescuing” or conserving ancient grains and the diversity of cultural traditions of bread baking. This diversity is represented by three ovens from different parts of the world- a traditional Norwegian flatbread “takke”, a tandoor oven and a wood-fired stone oven.

Photos: Monica Løvdal

In 2012 Futurefarmers sowed a cultural grain field with 9 varieties of heritage grains. These ancient varieties fell out of production in the early 1900s and have been widely forgotten and nearly extinct due to the prominence of industrial grains which are more predictable in production, but have less genetic variation and are therefore less resilient to climatic changes. One way to conserve seed varieties is to keep them in production. Ancient grains have been kept alive through sharing between small farmers. At Losæter these seeds represent our common heritage and are symbols of resilience, diversity and knowledge. Many local farmers and gardeners are actively preserving seeds through seed swaps and the Norwegian Seed Savers association (KVANN) network.

See video essay about Svedjerugen (ancient slash and burn rye) and interview with farmer Johan Swãrd here:
Svedjerug: A video essay from Futurefarmers on Vimeo.

In 2012 Futurefarmers sowed a 300 m2 field with ancient grains including Emmer, Spelt, Enkorn og Svedjerug. The seeds were donated by Johan Swärd.

In 2013 a big group of people sowed the field as part of an anti-GMO campaign. The particiants came 19 organizations in Norway.

In 2016 the field was sown at the same time som the bakehouse was built. See the magical film about this here:

INTO THE GROUND AND UP TO THE SKY from Futurefarmers on Vimeo.

Read more about urban agriculture in  Oslo:


This post is also available in: Norwegian Bokmål