PROSPECTING: A GEOLOGICAL
SURVEY OF GREYS I
drilling residue, 60 pcs. 2.6 meter rock-core samples of 2.5 billion-year-old primary rock, black steel
Commissioned by the Dark Ecology project with the support of the Arts Council Norway’s Cultural fond and fund for Sound and Image, the Association of Norwegian Visual Artist (NBK)
and the City of Bergen. The project was conducted in cooperation with Hilde Methi and Sonic Acts, the Geological Survey of Norway (NGU) and Arctic Drilling AS.
Stones possess a kind of gravitas, something ultimate and unchanging, something that will never perish or else has already done so. They attract through an intrinsic, infallible, immediate beauty, answerable to no one, necessarily perfect yet excluding the idea of perfection in order to exclude approximation, error, and excess. This spontaneous beauty thus precedes and goes beyond the actual notion of beauty, of which it is at once the promise and the foundation. – Roger Caillois, The Writing of Stones
Prospecting: A Geological Survey of Greys is a two-part project that appropriates the scientific geological methods of extracting, analysing and categorising mineral specimens. In the first part of the project, Jonsson initiated a mineral prospecting drilling in Sør-Varanger municipality to extract rock-core samples of metamorphic gneiss from one of the oldest geological provinces on earth. Set at Prestefjellet, just outside Kirkenes in northern Norway, a thick foundation of 2.5-billion-year-old primary rock was explored with the help of diamond rock core drilling to the depth of 170 meters.
The site-specific work consists of drilling residue and fragments from inside the ancient rock, which are no longer commercially viable. These residues serve to identify the bedrock’s various grey tones and visualize a temporary juxtaposition; a massive column of rock-core samples shadowed by its negative – the adjacent
5-centimetre-wide hole in the basement rock.