National Nordic Museum exhibits new sculpture by Jónsi, 'Iridian light vs loom evil'

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National Nordic Museum exhibits new sculpture by Jónsi, 'Iridian light vs loom evil'
Installation View from the FLOD exhibit: FL有 was commissioned by the National Nordic Museum and features original music created by J髇si, which can only be heard in the exhibition.



SEATTLE, WA.- J髇si (J髇 摅r Birgisson), the lead singer of the world-famous rock band Sigur R髎, is continuing his collaboration with the National Nordic Museum with a scent and sound sculpture, titled Iridian light vs loom evil. FL有, an original immersive art experience created for the museum by J髇si, ran for four months and was so well received that the museum extended the exhibition until August 6.

Starting this August through October 29, visitors can experience J髇si’s Iridian light vs loom evil, a sculpture comprised of speaker horns, the appearance of which have been transformed with the application of the chemical element bismuth.

Bismuth transmutes into iridescent “hopper crystals,” imparting a pink-metallic luster to the sculpture. J髇si selected this bismuth to allude to the LGBTQ+ experience of coming out, which ultimately culminates with a new beginning. Bismuth is believed to help ease transitions, encouraging a calm acceptance of change and heightening energy levels to be able to adapt and transform by aiding travel between the physical and spiritual realms.

Iridian light vs loom evil is a two-channel sound installation playing a piece composed for the sculpture by the iconic musician. Spikes protrude from the sides of the speakers, defending the core and referencing today’s charged political climate. The speaker horns represent the brave, queer activists fighting for justice and equal human rights. J髇si, who is a perfumer, has used the scent of the blue lotus symbolically in the work. The lotus flower contains both male and female reproductive parts and can self-pollinate. In alternative medicine, blue lotus is historically known to induce feelings of euphoria and relaxation.

“We are thrilled to display J髇si’s Iridian light vs loom evil at the National Nordic Museum,” said Leslie Anne Anderson, the Museum’s Chief Curator. “As demonstrated with the visitor response to FL有, his work as a visual artist resonates with all audiences and fosters critical dialogue about the most pressing issues of our time.”

More about the FLOD exhibit: FL有 was commissioned by the National Nordic Museum and features original music created by J髇si, which can only be heard in the exhibition. The immersive art experience invites participants to let the room engage all their senses. J髇si’s mellifluous music and field recordings of the ocean are played through over 30 speakers that deluge the room with spatialized surround sound. The audio installation simulates the experience of a wave traveling the length of the gallery while the scent of seaweed, harvested and distilled by J髇si himself, fills the air.

FL有 is J髇si’s first exhibition in a US museum. The National Nordic Museum has been at the forefront of an evolving museum experience with installations that challenge tradition, push boundaries, and offer cutting-edge contemporary art, as well as new expressions of history and heritage. Their latest exhibition by famed Icelandic sculptor Steinunn 摅rarinsd髏tir (Th髍arinsd髏tir) opened on July 15. Titled Wayfinders, it features 13 life-sized cast-aluminum sculptures, which will guide the Museum’s visitors through its outdoor and indoor public spaces.

About J髇si (J髇 摅r Birgisson): Since the 1990s, world-renowned interdisciplinary artist J髇si has produced ethereal sounds through an astute aesthetic that combines the minimal, the classical, and the progressive. J髇si initially gained international recognition as the lead vocalist for the Icelandic experimental rock band Sigur R髎, whose unique sounds have been equated with the sublime. J髇si’s unequivocal vocal and instrumental approach has expanded the boundaries of musical genres, rendering him one of the leading musical artists of our time. J髇si’s band Sigur R髎 has recently released a long-awaited record 羣ta, their first studio album in a decade. The band has embarked on a European and North American tour and will perform in Seattle on August 24th.

Outside of Sigur R髎, J髇si has cultivated a latticework of other interconnected music projects, inclusive of solo works and collaborations. In 2009 he and partner Alex Somers released the landmark ambient album Riceboy Sleeps, which they followed up in 2019 with Lost & Found. In 2018, J髇si, Alex Somers, and Paul Corley formed Liminal, whose ambient sound bath events have been hosted at art spaces across the world to high critical praise. In 2019, he formed the musical duo Dark Morph with Swedish composer Carl Michael von Hausswolf.  

Over the past two decades J髇si has collaborated with musicians, visual artists, and filmmakers to create a robust body of work across disciplines. Working with such leading creative figures as Doug Aitken, Cameron Crowe, Merce Cunningham, Olafur Eliasson, and Carl Michael von  Hausswolf, J髇si’s artistic collaborations have resulted in prestigious awards and critical acclaim.  

J髇si’s band Sigur R髎 has recently released a long-awaited record 羣ta, their first studio album in a decade. The band has embarked on a European and North American tour and will perform in Seattle on August 24th.

National Nordic Museum
'Iridian light vs loom evil'
Starting this August through October 29th, 2023










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