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Mixed media installation

8 microbial corroded steel sheets with sounds, argyrotype on hand-made paper, 4K–video, microphotographs, photo documentation, collage, cartography, vitrine with artefacts



Commissioned by singuhr e.V. in cooperation with the Schering Stiftung with the support of the City of Bergen and the AiR Bergen-Berlin program.The project was made possible by the Berliner Wasserbetriebe in collaboration with Anders Ehlin and Pierre Zerbib (technical realization for research setup and audio displays), Jan Römer (exhibition setup), Hannah Beeck and Valentin Cernat (assistance), Thomas Koch and Eckehard Güther (sound technology) and Roman März (photographic documentation).


Special thanks to Regina Gnirss/Michel Gunkel (Berliner Wasserbetriebe), Prof. Regine Hengge (Humboldt-Universität Berlin), Stéphane Bauer (Kunstraum Kreuzberg), Christoph Blattmacher, Agnes Meyer-Brandis, Hans Peter Kuhn, Carl Seiffarth, Carsten Stabenow and Kevin Mayo.

'Contemporary Diagram – Berlin' is a site-specific work inspired by the late-nineteenth-century hydrodynamic experiments of the Norwegian physicist Carl Anton Bjerknes. Bjerknes’ who studied the mechanical behaviour of fluids, is a reference point to Jonsson's survey and working method of exploring how frequencies and melodies influence the growth and formations of organisms. During a project residency at the sewage research facility of the Berliner Wasserbetriebe in Berlin-Neukölln, eight experimental set-ups was installed to study how the bacteria in the waste water respond to different sounds and music.

For her experiment, the sewage offers ideal conditions, since it is populated by bacteria that can be cultured on iron plates and trigger corrosion processes. Using standard aquariums, eight experimental stations were built, exposing the bacteria in the sewage water to infra- and ultrasound, different audible frequencies, her voice singing a note and music by the Russian composer Alexander Mosolov (1900–1973).

The installation presents Jonsson's results as well as contextual information about the research, adding written notes, observations and thoughts to her findings. The exhibition room thus evolves into a sensory research space interlacing hearing and seeing, contemplation and reflection.

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