Jesper Norda download CV | PORTFOLIO | CONTACT

RECENT: Skankaloss 2014, Gagnef-festivalen // UR KINDERSZENEN (NO. 13) AV ROBERT SCHUMANN, Konstepidemin, GBG // Culturehub Refest, New York









Ur Kinderszenen (No. 13) av Robert Scumann (2014), Galleri Konstepidemin, Göteborg

Torch / 17987162521 Meters in 1 minute (2013) (HD-video, no sound, 1 minute/loop). Torch / Other Precipitates, Svilova, Göteborg

Echos bones and other precipitates by Samuel Beckett (2013)

Chopin hours / Still sun (2013), Permanent sound installation with images, Röselidskolan, Lerum

Ground (2013) 4-channel video with sound. Part of groupshow, TWEAKS, Nordiska akvarellmuseet.

Right hand - Left hand, (2012) purchased by Göteborgs konstmuseum, 2013 (Photo: Göteborgs konstmuseum)

Explosion clock (2013) (HD video, no sound, 16 minutes), Karlskrona konsthall.

Magnolia clock (2004/2012) (HD-video, no sound (11 hours 17 minutes), Konstfrämjandet Örebro, 2012

The Goldberg variation / 13 hour sunrise (2012) (Sound (12 hours 25 minutes) / HD-video (12 hours 48 minutes)), Konstfrämjandet Örebro, 2012

The Centre of silence, Kalmar konstmuseum (2010) (Voice (interleaved by silence, sinuswave and white noise). White filter on window)

Verge (2009), video, infinite loop

sound and video installation: two channel video with two channel stereo sound, sheet of glass with surface transducers, loudspeakers
images: collage/ink on transparent paper

Excerpt from exhibition text by Johanna Willenfelt:
A large sheet of glass is central in the double sense in Jesper Nordas exhibition From Kinderzsenen (No 13) by Robert Schumann at Gallery Konstepidemin in Gothenburg. The sheet hangs from wires in the middle of the room and is the first object the visitor meet when she enters the exhibition. The glass acts as a speaker membrane for the piece of music that gives the show its name. [...]
Through the transparent disc there is a clear view into the next room where the viewer get a glimpse of o video projection. Two films are screened in here, with the projection surfaces placed at right angles to each other. The same course of events are portrayed in both scenes, but from two different perspectives. The first film is a recording of the pianist's hands gesticulating as they hit the keys to Der Dichter Spricht. The second film uncovers the instrument internals, or, in other words, the mechanics of the piano. The two projections are in sync, but the audio that accompanies the films is still not the melody of which >the poet speaks< but what we hear is the sound that the piano gives off before the oscillations from the strings has reached a human ear. [...]

Download complete exhibition folder (pdf, swedish only)

Review Göteborgsposten 2014-03-15

Still image documentation by Hendrik Zeitler.

more images here


Jesper Norda (b. 1972) has a background as a musician but half way trough his training to become a composer he changed into visual art. In 2002 he graduated with an MA from Konsthögskolan Valand in Gothenburg. Since then he has been working both with music and visual art. In both art forms with the same artistic consistency. In his visual art practice he expands the conceptual base into simple spatial operations made up of objects, text or light, sometimes linked to popular culture and sometimes linked to entirely personal experiences.

”A main thread in his artistry is a constant questioning of the borderlines between sound and silence. The visual and the sounding materials are juxtaposed in conceptually challenging ways. Even if his works look and sound quite differently from theirs, he is probably the Swedish sound artist that is closest to the conceptual tradition of artists like La Monte Young, John Baldessari and Sol LeWitt. In the focusing on the real and factual, in the reduction of expressions down to only a few, where there arises a friction between the room and the emptiness. But the complexity that is the effect of this has not so much to do with theoretical questions, it gains it strength from an everyday listening, a communicating address, not least noticeable in the many works that take text as its starting point.” / Magnus Haglund


TORCH / OTHER PRECIPITATES, Galleri Svoliva, Göteborg

The first thing that happens is a sense of backwash. There is no pressure drop, but it feels like that’s exactly what has happened. And then I fall. Into absolute stillness, absolute silence. Imagine that you are the light of the torch that for a second flares up and then falls 17987162521 meters down into space. Imagine in the same way that you are each and everyone of the letters that, for example, make up Samuel Becketts complete book of poems Echo ́sBones and Other Precipitates, that you are the words disassembled, a print raster, all the speech in the world, cry, wonder, despair, desire, rage transformed into photons and that you are now, falling through your own skull, encased in the world and at the same time the world encased in you, as the poem says: ”through the sky/of my skull shell of sky and earth”, imagine yourself consisting of light and words, the only things in the universe that last and are completely still in the collapse, falling straight out into darkness and time. Imagine that stillness. Then imagine the core of precipitation, the crack before precipitation, the placenta when the fetus lets go and falls, the cycles and inversions of the electrons in the human brain, the blood vessels in the eye, x-rays, hastily sketched faces, rivers, traffic networks, borderlines, rifts, cracks, the remnants of motion.

Each time I stand before a work of art made by Jesper Norda giant rooms of silence open inside me. Rooms I know I have to remain in. To be able to remain human. Frightening? Beautiful? Filled with sadness? Indifferent? Shadow and light on a white paper. The words still ”unworded”, yet complete, unachievable. A human being being human: with the torch ”mark ones presence in the darkness, send messages to someone, warn someone, call for help". / Marie Norin, 2013.

View more images here

33 prints in handmade book, 420X297 mm, pigment print on archival paper, edition 5+1AP

All the letters in Samuel Becketts collection of poems: Echos bones (and other precipitates). In original order, spacing between each letter, no capital letter, no punctuation. All chapter and verse indications are removed. The words of Echos bones reduced to sheets of abstract patterns, varying in intensity.


Interactive 4-channel sound installation + 6 c-print silicon mounted on plexi (38X57 cm)
The interaction is controlled by a computer with SSD-drive. Development of the software is made by Fredric Bergström in MAX/MSP.

A faint twittering of birds can be heard in the room. The birds are accompanied by a soft, gentle music. You walk into the room and sit down, maybe you are waiting for someone, maybe you read a little, perhaps you are too early for a lesson. A friend comes and you start chatting, birds still singing, you might not pay attention to them anymore. After a while, the room is filled with more students, now the twittering of the birds have fallen silent, giving room for the activity in the room. Everyone goes into their lessons, the room becomes silent: the birds start to sing again, while the room is waiting for new visitors.

Among with four other artists I was invited by the Nordic Watercolor museum to make a comment on a piece of art belongin to their permanent collection.
I choose to work with a few images by the icelandic artist Georg Gudni.

The text in the video was presented in the exhibition, english translation:
"In all electrical systems there is a tone. In everyday language we call tone for mains hum. This tone is a result of what we call earthing, or grounding.
It is possible to decompose any sound in a large number of sine waves. A sine wave is the purest form of sound. It is theoretically possible to recreate any sound using sine waves. The thing is to find the right number of frequencies and the right volume ratio between them. The fundamental tone of the sound, and the harmonic overtones that creates the timbre of the sound. The set of harmonics is what separates one sound from another sound. What distinguishes one color from another color.
Hz means number of cycles per second. When we talk about sound we use it as a term to measure how quickly the air pressure fluctuates. Thus: the speed at which an eardrum quivers back and forth when it is exposed to a sound.
The frequencies that I have used to model the sound of mains hum is 50 hz, 150 hz, 250 hz, 300 hz, 350 hz, 450 hz, 550 hz, 600 hz, 650 hz, 750 hz, 850 hz, 950 hz, 1050 Hz, 1150 Hz, 1250 Hz, 1450 Hz, 1550 Hz.
Sound waves spread as microscopic tremor in all matter. Everything trembles. Sometimes the tremble hits an eardrum, sets the small fine bones of the cochlea in motion, continues and put cilia in tremble, and later find its way to the auditory center in the brain: becoming electricity again."
/ J.N

Photo credits: Hendrik Zeitler

This piece was installed in three adjacent rooms on the 5th floor of the Gothenburg Museum of Art. These rooms mostly contains religious art from 1400-1600. The video was displayed in the center room. The sound in this work is based on JS Bach’s, Nun komm’ der Heiden Heiland, in a piano transcription by F. Busoni.The part of the music that is played by the right hand is heard through a speaker in the right room, the part played by the left hand is heard through a speaker in the left room. The video consists of an extreme closeup of some piano keys, trembling by the touch of the pianist. When facing the video in the middle room, the sound is “whole”, when you move to one of the other rooms you experience the split of the sound. When standing close to the left speaker, the music played by the left hand rings out on its own, lonely and fragile, the music played by the right hand is heard only very faint, from the distance. And vice versa.

”My first composition professor Ole Lützow-Holm said in an interview, ”the melody is the vibrating thought”. I read this interview right before I would start my education at the college of music... but I can not recall me ever asking him about the meaning of it? In any case, I have carried that sentence with me ever since, sometimes it will come to me when I am not sure of what I am doing, sometimes when I am having a hard time trying to start up a new project. And now it comes to me when I am supposed to write something about my work at the 5th floor at Göteborgs konstmuseum.
However, this work is not so much about thought, it is mostly just body. And the visitor’s presence that binds something together that has been torn apart.
” / J.N.

View more images here.



A black surface is turning white, pixel by pixel. And then black again.
(Video above is a simulation, please view in fullscreen.)

This piece was part of Explosion clock - The Goldberg variation - Bokstäverna, a solo show made in Karlskron konsthall 2013.
View more images here.

Magnolia clock consists of all the words in the script for the film Magnolia by PT Anderson. All words; camera directions, directors notes, dialogue, location descriptions, camera angels etc etc. No capital letters, no punctuations, the words just line up one by one, second by second. A visual indicator of time: a clock.

Video above a short excerpt, the original film is 11 hours, 41 minutes and 17 seconds.

"The new works by Jesper Norda currently presented at Konstfrämjandet Örebro revolves around the concept of time, or rather the interstices, those that we constantly experience but never think about. Using methods as printed pages with all the seconds of a day and night, where the blackness of the ink varies according to the solar power, we are made aware of these gaps. By converting one medium to another we get insight into the invisible but essential components that create the space that we exist in, and in particular the perceptual process that we experience it with. Abstract substances often form the backbone of Jesper's work, such as the frequency of a sound wave and how it affects us, but especially the time it takes for a sound wave to travel, the vibrations it creates or the traces after a sound has subsided. The silence is as important as the sound. The illusion only illustrates reality. With a parallel career as a sound producer and composer with three solo albums behind him, Jesper's sensitivity to the rhythm and the silence in between is a detailed game of pulling apart and putting together. A calculated order re-organizes experiences to clockworks, where mechanically depicted words create mental images, or where every note becomes deserted and left to echo out alone, accompanied by a sunrise that lasts for 13 hours. Reduced to abstraction and the colors black and white, the room lights up, slowly and patiently, pixel by pixel. Time is eminently physical, and no moment is ever the same. Everything changes, all the time, with the tremendous power of a progressive movement." / Sofia Mavroudis,


Magnolia clock and Goldberg variation were part of solo exhibition, Örebro konstfrämjande, march 2012. More images here.

The Goldberg Variation is based on JS Bach's works Goldberg Variations. Each note / impact is played every two seconds. The dynamics are equalized, all drama and musical direction is removed. The original work is about 30 minutes, this version is 12 hours and 25 minutes.

13 hour sunrise: a black surface where a line of 33 pixels turn white every two seconds. From left to right, top to bottom.
A horizon and a room that very slowly gets brighter.

Swedish text with english subtitles. Voice: Henrik Holmberg. (For english voice, go to:

This piece was comissioned by Kalmar konstmuseum: a solo exhibition in the main hall that would contain sound only. A man is speaking about the room, the measurements of the room, the amount of air molecules, the weight of the air. The voice describes how the air molecules behave differently when exposed to different kind of soundwaves. He speaks about the intense air pressure in the room, the intense air pressure in the cranium of the listener and the balance between those two spaces: the state we call silence.

"What about doing nothing? Just be where you are, in your room, with the thoughts coming and going. It’s kind of what we do, all the time, isn’t it? Like right now, when you are reading this text?
There are obvious links between Jesper Norda’s sound installation The Centre of Silence, created for an exhibition at Kalmar Art Museum 2009, and Alvin Lucier’s 1969-classic I’m Sitting in a Room. The two text pieces both use the factual information about the room where the works are performed as starting point for a series of minimal variations. But where the room’s ambience in Alvin Lucier’s case give the sounds an increasingly thick and complex texture, it becomes a conceptual ambience in Jesper Norda’s radical transformation of the material conditions. It stays the same, but it never feels the same. The effect is somehow the complete opposite to Alvin Lucier’s work. By thinning out it becomes complex.
You are there, at the centre of the piece, with a voice reading a formal text telling about the geometrical dimensions of the room and how the ears will react to changes in sound and resonance. But the neutral voice and the dry character of the text will slowly create a tension in the thinking about the piece, a sense of drama. A multitude of rooms will open up. The mysterious effect of the sober aesthetic and the reduced set of expressions is a peculiar and even melodic romanticism. You listen carefully and suddenly you hear the most wonderful harmonies. Where do they come from?
This paradox of using seemingly boring and non-agitated text materials to bring about a personal presence, characterize several of Jesper Norda’s works, for example two of his latest installation pieces, both from 2009: Resist With All Your Heart and Microgram of Light. In the first work a short text is repeated many, many times – ”Stay in a place infected with truth and resist with all your heart” – but for every repetition the word truth is replaced with another word. In the second one a light projector is directed to a big print consisting of an extremely long series of zeros, 17 521 zeros after one another, ending with the figures and letters ”123 microgram of light”.
Jesper Norda started as a composer, but changed direction while he was studying in the composition class at the Music Academy in Gothenburg in the end of the 90s and switched to the Art Academy in the same town for his master degree. A main thread in his artistry since then has been a constant questioning of the borderlines between sound and silence. The visual and the sounding materials are juxtaposed in conceptually challenging ways. Even if his works look and sound quite differently from theirs, he is probably the Swedish sound artist that is closest to the conceptual tradition of artists like La Monte Young, John Baldessari and Sol LeWitt and the reductionism of musicians like Toshimaru Nakamura, Sachiko M and Taku Sugimoto.
Several of Jesper Norda’s works play with the concept of silence. For example the sound installation Tear Gravity from 2005, where two loudspeaker membranes were put on the floor of a gallery, vibrating slowly like heart or a lung, but the frequence making them move – 0,3 Hz – much lower than the human ear can hear (the average human can hear sounds between 20 Hz and 16,000 Hz). Or Field of Love (Hommage à Dimitrios K) from 2007 where an extremely strong bass loop was played on a big PA-system buried 2 feet under the ground; the best position to hear any of the bass tones was to lie down on the grass and listen with an ear to the ground. This literally subconscious underground music materialized as vibrations in the body and in the field where it was played.
When asked about what kind of quality he looks for in a piece, Jesper Norda anwers: exactitude. He wants his works to be as singular and clear as possible, and so pedagogically plain that they border on the abstract and incomprehensible.
This is the enigma of sound art. The attention to what is going, both in the presence and in the absence of sounds, brings the work right to the centre of silence. And one of the best ways to achieve this is to do nothing."
/ Magnus Haglund

Catalogue (swedish/english). Texts by Marie Norin and Magnus Haglund.

An infinite zoom out, you feel like you are leaving the ground but you remain in the same position. The subtitle flickers a bit: Little by litte, everyting will come to normal.

Part of solo exhibition "The heart of the matter", Sandvikens konsthall, 2009.
See more images here