Oslo’s inhabitants live closer to nature than many realize. Artists Toril Johannessen and Marjolijn Dijkman show us the microscopic life in the brackish water of the Oslo Fjord in their project Liquid Properties.
The new Munch Museum being built on reclaimed ground in Bjørvika is part of a new borough emerging on the waterfront where the Aker River meets the Oslo Fjord. Beneath the surface of the estuary, resides an ecosystem that cannot be observed by the naked human eye. Norwegian artist Toril Johannessen (1978) and Dutch artist Marjolijn Dijkman (1978) examine the microscopic life in the brackish water in their new film Reclaiming Vision. Aided by a microscope, they create a stage for microorganisms, who interact with algae cultures developed in a laboratory, microplastics, and other material traces of human activity,
The 27-minute film is shown on a large outdoor screen, suspended from the bridge by Nylandsveien, which can be viewed from the atrium where the Aker River meets the Barcode. The water flows between the audience and the film to create a unique viewing experience. Composer Henry Vega has devised an evocative soundtrack to film. Visitors may also examine water samples from across the estuary in specially designed glass sculptures, installed along the footpath by the atrium.
The film has been made in collaboration with the research section for Aquatic Biology and Toxicology at the University of Oslo.