The Sami Artists’Union is a professional organisation for Sami visual artists, craftsmen, sami arts and crafts (dáiddaduojárat) and artistic photographers from Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. The purpose of the SDS is to safeguard the members’ academic, social, economic and non-profit interests.

The SDS is politically and religiously independent.


Membership of the SDS is open to Sami visual artists, craftsmen, sami arts and crafts (dáiddaduojárat) and artistic photographers who meet the admission conditions adopted by the SDS annual meeting.  Applications for membership must be submitted in writing to the board. Membership fees are paid based on the number of months in the first year.
Members shall pay an annual fee to the SDS that is determined at the annual meeting. Members who have not paid a membership fee by the end of the year will lose their membership after a written reminder.
New membership can only be achieved after a new request plus payment of the current annual fee. Russian members pay a special fee.
Membership ceases upon opting-out, exclusion or non-payment of membership fees.

In the event of a conflict between members and the SDS board the member shall be able to present her/his case to a mediator appointed by the SDS.

Members who have reached the age of 67 are granted senior membership and pay half a fee. Honorary membership may be given to members who have made a particularly important contribution to the SDS and to Sami art. Honorary members pay a symbolic fee.

Returning members are automatically admitted through a formal board decision on application.

SDS may:

  1. enter into framework agreements and normal contracts, etc. with potential clients for its members
  2. enter into collective payment agreements when remuneration is made on cultural policy grounds or for other reasons when it is impractical or unrealistic with individual remuneration
  3. prosecute and pursue violations of members’ works/achievements
  4. enter into binding agreements that allow:
    a) for specific limited use, recordings or copies of the members’ works/achievements in the form they are published in
    b) broadcasting of members’ published works, published works of art and photographs and of broadcast or published recordings of achievements
    c) recording or copying recordings of members’ works/presentations for use in broadcasting and storing such recordings.
    d) forwarding or other transmission of broadcasts containing members’ works/presentations.
  5. enter into binding agreements on remuneration for the use of members’ works/achievements

    The authorisations in accordance with sections 2, 3, 4 and 5 are non-exclusive. As a result of this provision the SDS may transfer management to a joint management organisation of which the association is a member.

    Safeguarding the members’ interests abroad, including the management of rights abroad and remuneration for such, may also be left to organisations in other countries. Members are obliged to follow the agreements that the SDS – itself or through participation in other management organisations – enters into on behalf of its members, within the limits set out in these statutes and legislation.

    Through membership, each member authorises the SDS to negotiate and enter into agreements with the Sami Parliaments, the state, counties, municipalities and other institutions. This authorisation applies to general agreements and includes, within the limits drawn up by the SDS’s statutes or the annual meeting, also agreements on the right to use members’ works that have been published, otherwise made public or copies that have been transferred.

    Decisions made at the annual meeting are binding on the SDS’s executive bodies and on individual members.


    The annual meeting is the highest body of the SDS. The annual meeting is held every year before the end of April. In special cases exceptions may be made regarding the date of the annual meeting. Notice, with a preliminary agenda, shall be sent out at least 2 months before the annual meeting. Matters members wish to raise at the annual meeting shall be submitted to the board at least 5 weeks before the annual meeting. The agenda, including all case papers, shall be sent out at least 3 weeks before the annual meeting. Only matters raised in this way shall be dealt with by the annual meeting.

    All members of the SDS have the right to attend the annual meeting. A member who cannot attend the annual meeting may give written authorisation to another member. No member can have more than 3 powers of attorney. The annual meeting is quorate when at least 1/3 of the membership (including voting authorisations) is present. Members shall receive minutes of the annual meeting no later than 1 month after the meeting is held.

    The annual meeting deals with

    1. The annual report from the board and artistic council. All councils and committees must present an annual report.
    2.  Accounts
    3. Matters submitted to the annual meeting and by the board
    4. Work programme/action programme
    5. Budget
    6. Determination of membership fees
    7. Election of:
      1)    the SDS Chairman of the board
      2)    the board w/deputies
      3)    Nomination committee
      4)    Head of Artistic Council
      5)    Artistic Council SDS w/ deputies
      6)    Artistic Council SDG w/ deputies
      7)    Representatives with personal deputies to the SDG’s board with chairman, deputy chairman and chairman of the Artistic Council
      8)    Representative with deputy to board of the Sami Artists’ Council
      9)    Representative to Dáiddafoanda
      10) Representative to the SDR Negotiation Committee with the Sami Parliament of Norway
      11)  Representatives with deputies the SDS Negotiation Committee, who also constitute a representative w/deputy to Sámikopiija’s Supervisory Council
      12) The SDS’s proposal for a representative to Sámikopiija’s board
      13) Representatives with deputies to SKFV’s board
      14) Representative with deputy to the Stipend Committee for the Sami artist stipend
      15) Representatives with deputies to the Sami Parliament of Norway’s procurement   scheme for contemporary art and sami arts and crafts (dáiddaduojárat)
      16) Representatives to the NKF/ IAA and other international artist organisations
      17) Representatives to other committees and/or working groups appointed by the  annual meeting


    An extraordinary annual meeting shall be summoned with at least 4 weeks’ notice when required by:

    •    At least 1/10 of the membership
    •  A majority of the board

    Demands for an extraordinary annual meeting shall be submitted in writing. Case papers must accompany the notice of a meeting. Only the matter(s) for which the extraordinary annual meeting is convened shall be dealt with at the annual meeting. Otherwise, the rules of an ordinary annual meeting apply.

    § 6  THE BOARD

    The board is the executive body of the SDS. The board is responsible for ensuring that decisions and intentions of the annual meeting are followed. The board consists of 4 members with 2 deputies who are elected by the annual meeting for a period of 2 years.

    The SDS chairman is elected by the annual meeting for a period of 1 year with the possibility of an extension.  Continuity of the board must be ensured. The board elects the deputy chairman. The chairman and deputy chairman make up the working committee. The chairman has signature rights. The deputy chairman has the signature right for the chairman’s receipts.

    The board also acts as an organ of appeal for all members. For this reason neither the chairman nor board members can simultaneously have evaluative positions in the organisation.


    At least 4 board meetings shall be held a year. Board meetings are convened with at least 1 week’s notice. Deliberations of board meetings shall be recorded in a protocol. Transcripts of the minutes of meetings shall be sent to all board members and deputies within 1 week of the board meeting. The meeting protocol acts as a security authority and is not considered valid until all members of the board have approved the minutes. If board members do not provide feedback on the submitted protocol, it is considered approved 2 weeks after the minutes have been sent out.

    The SDS members shall be informed of the board’s work at least 4 times a year. The board is quorate when the chairman or deputy chairman, as well as 1 ordinary board member and possibly 1 deputy member for the chairman or deputy chair are present. In cases of voting equality the chairman’s double vote counts. If the chairman is not present the deputy chairman has a double vote. The chairman and/or deputy chairman and/or others the board authorises have the right of signature for the SDS


    The Artistic Council has evaluative responsibility in the SDS. The Artistic Council consists of 3 members and 2 deputies with a broad academic composition. Deputies should supplement the Artistic Council to cover subject areas that are not represented in the Artistic Council.

    The Artistic Council is quorate when 3 members and/or deputies are present. The chairman and/or deputy chairman shall be present for decision-making.
    The Artistic Council is elected by the annual meeting of the SDS. The annual meeting elects the chairman for 2 years. The Artistic Council chooses the its deputy chairman.
    Each annual meeting elects 2 new members and 2 deputies.

    Areas of work for the SDS artistic council:
    a) Assess applications for membership to the SDS in cases where the application needs professional evaluation.
    b) Nominate applicants for scholarships for:
    • the SKFV’s stipend
    • Other stipends
    c) Appoint artistic consultants for decorations in Sami areas and consultants to public and other decorations outside the RSU’s mandate area when requested.
    d) Participate in other matters where the Artistic Council’s expertise is requested.

    The Artistic Council shall hold at least 4 meetings a year. A separate protocol shall be maintained from the meetings. In the case of vote equality, the chairman’s double vote counts. In the absence of the chairman the deputy chairman has a double vote.

    Members of the Artistic Council and its deputies are, for the period in question, excluded from participating in matters where the Artistic Council’s evaluation is of paramount importance. In cases where one of the Artistic Council’s members is disqualified in a case a deputy member is summoned to the meeting.

    The SDS is represented on the SDR’s board with a member and deputy elected by the SDS’s annual meeting.

    The nomination committee proposes candidates for positions to be elected by the annual meeting. The nomination committee consists of 2 members and is elected for 1 year.

    Members’ meetings are convened by the board. Members’ meetings may comment on matters raised by the board or the members’ meeting itself. Members’ statements are advisory to the board.

    The board may bring matters of particular importance to individual members to a referendum. Likewise, the annual meeting or an extraordinary annual meeting may decide that a matter should go to a referendum.

    The board cannot use a referendum to annul annual meeting resolutions. If fewer than 2/3 of the members participate in the referendum or at least half vote the same, the referendum is not binding and the final decision can be made by the board.

    § 13 VOTING
    Decisions at board, members and annual meetings are decided by simple majority

    § 14 ACCOUNTS
    The fiscal year is from 1 January to 31 December. Auditing of the accounts is carried out by an authorised/registered accountant. The accounts are presented to the annual meeting for approval.

    § 15 EXCLUSION
    Miellahtuid guđet fasttit vuostálastet organisašuvnna ja miellahtuid oktasaš beroštumiid, sáhttá čuoldit jos jahkečoahkkimis 2/3 nu gáibida. Dakkár mearrádusa sáhttá váidalit boahtte jahkečoahkkimii.

    Amendments of the statutes may only take place at the annual meeting with a 2/3 majority.

    Dissolution of the organisation may only take place with a 2/3 majority at 2 consecutive annual meetings – possibly an annual meeting and an extraordinary annual meeting. Meetings to consider resolution proposals shall be convened with 3 months’ notice. The meeting will decide how the organisation’s archives etc. will be stored and disposed of in the future. It is assumed that archives etc. be made as much use of as possible in line with the organisation’s previous purpose. The meeting shall, in the same way and with the same assumptions, decide how the organisation’s financial assets be used in future.


     digitally in 2021.