Living Archives_Nordic Music Days 2016

Living Archives is an ongoing project initiated by Hild Borchgrevink, exploring how music can be represented, reflected upon and discussed outside the temporary experience of a live performance. Each version of Living Archives is also in itself conceived as temporary and open ended, intended to adapt to different musical, spatial and social contexts, to acquire new material and learn from experience.

The first version of Living Archives was made for Nordic Music Days 2016 , a contemporary music festival that took place in Reykjavík, Iceland 29/9-2/10 2016. The aim of this Living Archives was to invite audience and artists to engage with the ideas behind the music played at NMD by diving into the composers’ sources of inspiration. Composers featured the programme were asked to submit artworks, theory, poetry, sounds, samples, sketches, images, videos, objects or ephemera – anything that had in some way inspired or influenced their music to be played in the festival.

When possible, Living Archives made this material available to the public in both physical and digital formats, to explore how the physical and the digital might spark different forms of human interaction. Both the digital and the physical archive grew during the festival, as artists and a recording team added new material. A few examples below (here in digital format, necessarily):

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Spiegeltunnel (Max-Reinhardt-Park, Berlin 2009) by Olafur Eliasson

The sculpture Spiegeltunnel by visual artist Olafur Eliasson (above) was among the inspirations behind Icelandic composer Páll Ragnar Pállsson’s work Spiegeltunnel, performed at Nordic Music Days 2016 (excerpt):

The physical infrastructure of Living Archives consisted of 12 moveable wireframe shelves of different sizes, created in collaboration with architects Eskil Tin of Tintin Motors and Anna Røtnes of architect firm Praksis A. Each shelf had a tablet and a headset attached to it where digital material was available. The 12 shelves were intended to attract the attention of audience emerging from the concert halls and guide them towards listening and reading experiences they didn’t initially search for.

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Photo: Merve Kayan
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Sample from composer Ville Raasakka’s score Vanishing point for amplified piano solo (2013), among other things inspired by Richard Wagner’s Ankunft bei den schwarzen Schwänen.

Living Archives at NMD 2016 also included the documentation of the festival by percussionist and video artist Ross Karre and his rKAD documentation team. Excerpts of  sound and video from the festival were added to the tablets in library in Harpa when recorded. Some material was also posted to a Living Archives NMDFacebook page.

As part of Living Archives, the rKAD team also presented their artistic approach to documenting contemporary music in a workshop at the Iceland Art Academy.

Living Archives at NMD in Reykjavik was kindly supported by Arts Council Norway, Norwegian-Icelandic Cultural Cooperation Fund

After NMD in Reykjavík, Living Archives NMD 2016 was invited to present in Music Norway’s Open House seminar on music publishing and at the conference Musikkarvkonferansen 2016 – Interfaces: tradition and technology in musical heritage work at the Norwegian National Library.

The next event in the Living Archives series is an exhibition taking place at the Bergen Public Library during the Bergen International Festival in May 2017. Here, scores and inspirational material of three new compositions will be made available to the public for 3 weeks, leading up to a concert in which the music will be performed for the very first time. This project is connected to the 100 year anniversary of the Norwegian Society of Composers.

Stefi Kiesler’s calendar. In “Frederick Kiesler: Life Visions” at MAK Vienna 15.06–02.10.2016

Collaborative project (Apolonija Šušteršič, Hild Borchgrevink, Nina Krogh, Linn Lervik, Ida Uvaas), following Šušteršič’s invitation to create an intervention in the exhibition Frederick Kiesler: Life Visions at MAK Vienna. 

The project consisted of citations from the calendar of architect and scenographer Frederick Kiesler’s first wife Stefi Kiesler.  The calendar was made available to us by the archive of the Friedrich und Lillian Kiesler-Privatstiftung. Stefi Kiesler seems to have used it both to plan and to record her days – systematically marking events that changed after their first entry, with a strikethrough or a parenthesed “no”.

We chose texts from Stefi Kiesler’s calendar of 1945, starting with Tuesday, October 30 1945. On this date, an entry in Stefi Kiesler’s calendar reads:

 

9h meeting about Exp. on Magic
Max, Dorothea, Marcel, Seligmann, Matta

 

According to the scholars at the Kiesler archive, Stefi Kiesler’s calendar is one of very few sources mentioning this exhibition on magic, which apparently finally never took place.

From this starting point of the unreal, we cited a selection of entries of Stefi’s 1945 calendar chronologically on the wall of a main exhibition hall in the museum. The total number of dates corresponded to the duration of MAK’s Life Visions.

The series of dates formed an independent thread through the exhibition of Frederick Kiesler’s vast archive of architectural models, sketches and drawings, while the entries also referred to a large number of artists and acquaintances of the Kiesler couple appearing in other parts of the exhibition. 

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Spectator at Life visions. Foto: Hild Borchgrevink

The calendar entries were also communicated dynamically, a new entry each day in the exhibition period, by a Stefi Kiesler profile established on Twitter.

Many of the entries in the calendar are short, but when read in the context they were presented, they stood out as snapshots of the everyday, revealing a professional and social network. They also communicated a substantial contribution from Stefi Kiesler to her husband’s career by her writing, translating, networking and organising, even contributing financially through her permanent position as a librarian at the New York Public Library.

For many years, Stefi Kiesler worked on a book featuring examples of how dreams are described in literature. The book remained unfinished. Together with her habit of taking on many different aliases and variants of her name – such as Stefi, Stefanie and the pseudonym Pietro de Saga, this draws an interesting image of a curious, hard working woman.

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Utgått. Installasjon, Galleri Seilduken 8.-12.4 2016

«Utgått» (2016). Objekter, tekst, (video)

«Utgått» er nysgjerrig på overganger mellom offentlige og private rom og på arkiv og bibliotek som verdisystemer.

Bøkene i «Utgått» kommer fra hyllene for utgåtte bøker i Oslos 19 kommunale bibliotek. Noen var gratis. Andre ble kjøpt for en symbolsk sum biblioteket hadde bestemt. Jeg valgte bøker som jeg var nysgjerrig på. I installasjonen inviteres publikum til å gi en bok et nytt hjem, mot å fylle ut et kort som forteller meg hvilken bok de har valgt og hvorfor de valgte den.

 

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Søren Richter: Store norske ekspedisjoner
Interested in great discoveries

Morten A. Strøksnes: Rett vest
Because of the title

Svein Olav Hoff: Tore Hansen
Finnskogen

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Shadow moths/Skyggemøll. Interaktiv tekst. Kollisjonsindeks, Lydgalleriet, Bergen 5.-11.4.2013

Two slow text loops, total duration corresponding to the exhibition period. My contribution to the collective exhibition project Kollisjonsindeks at Lydgalleriet in Bergen. The text projection was triggered by motion in composer Thorolf Thuestad’s objects, which reacted electromagnetically and partially unpredictable to each other.

The first text loop, inspired by Thuestad’s insect-like machines, consists of found scientific sentences expressing doubt about moths. Moths are colorless, non-spectacular insects. Their life span is very short, often but a few hours. As species, moths have a huge number of subspecies that are very similar to each other. This makes moths difficult to map within traditional biological systems, and scientific texts about moths therefore often express doubt or change.


To lange tekstsløyfer med varighet tilsvarende utstillingsperioden. Mitt bidrag til det kollektive utstillingsprosjektet KollisjonsindeksLydgalleriet i Bergen. Funne tekster i respons til objekter laget av lydkunstner Thorolf Thuestad. Tekstprojeksjonen ble trigget av bevegelse i objektene, som igjen reagerte elektromagnetisk og delvis uforutsigbart på hverandre.

Den første tekstsløyfen handler om møll, inspirert av de insektlignende maskinene. Møll er fargeløse, lite spektakulære insekter. De lever kort, ofte bare noen timer. Kombinasjonen av den korte levetiden og et enormt antall underarter som ligner veldig på hverandre, gjør at møll er vanskelige å kartlegge fullstendig med tradisjonell biologisk systematikk.

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Engmøll var før en undergruppe av korsblomstmøll.

Bronsemøll ligner sterkt på bladmøll.

Sekkmøll er vanskelige å artsbestemme.

Rubladmøll kan minne om flatmøll.

Rent systematisk er møll en kunstig gruppe.

Inntil nylig ble gressmøll regnet som halvmøll.

Svepemøll har hørt til flekkmøllene.

Båndmøll har tre underfamilier.

Sotmøllens plassering i systemet er usikker.

Hvor mange arter som regnes som rørmøll, er uklart.

Praktmøll regnes ofte som prydmøll.

Korsblomstmøll ble tidligere regnet som spinnmøll.

Det er fortsatt noe tvil.

Flere familier er nå inkludert hos nattflyverne.

Nattlysmøll var før en undergruppe av sekkmøll.

Sigdmøll ble tidligere regnet som spinnmøll.

Opp mot fem tusen skyggemøll er ennå ubeskrevne.

Mange båtmøll er ikke katalogisert.

Lansettmøllens systematiske plassering er usikker.

Om dråpemøll er forholdsvis lite kjent.

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Oslo: et feltopptak. Intervju med et kollektiv

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«Oslo: et feltopptak» er et forsøk på å registrere kollektiv erfaring i tekst. Mellom 20 og 30 komponister, musikere og lydkunstnere som bor og arbeider i Oslo fikk tilsendt de samme spørsmålene om Oslo og lyd. Teksten består av svarene de sendte tilbake, anonymisert og presentert som en sum av stemmer, som en lyd, eller en by.

Prosjektet ble til som et svar på en forespørsel om å skrive om samtidsmusikkmiljøet i Oslo til boken «Musikens frihet och begränsning – 16 variationer över ett tema» (red. Magnus Haglund, Daidalos förlag 2011). Mange av de øvrige tekstene i boken springer ut av forskningsprosjektet Mot ett konstmusikens utvidgade fält (Göteborgs universitet 2008–2012).

 

Leksikon (interpolasjon) (2011)

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Eksamenstekst fra Skrivekunstakademiet i Hordaland. Utdrag utgitt i antologien Gruppe 11 på Kolon forlag 2011. Les utdrag her.

Tekstene arbeider med et leksikon som dokumentarisk tidsbilde og utforsker ulike språklige muligheter for å fylle ut mellomrommene mellom, eller koble sammen, ordparene som står på bokryggene av en eldre utgave av Aschehougs konversasjonsleksikon (Oslo, 1954–1961):

A – August
Augusta – Blodbøk
Blodforgiftning – Carlos
Carlow – Detmold
Detonasjon – Engsoleie
Engström – Ford, F. M.
Ford, Henry – Gisundet
Gitano – Heiberg
Heidal – Impresario
Impresjonisme – Kapillærer
Kapital – Kvaløy
Kvam – Madeira
Madeiraviner – Nedre Eiker
Nedreaas – Pevsner
Peyote – Salzburg
Salzgitter – Språkundervisning
Språkvitenskap – Trekrypere
Trekull – Åverk

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artist, writer, critic