Archive for the ‘Magne’ Category

“Texture” opening in Bodø

“It’s great to be back in Bodø”, Magne told NRK

Magne was in Bodø last Thursday, March 9th, for the opening of another exhibition of his Texture collaboration with HM Queen Sonja. This is the fifth out of six planned Texture exhibitions in Norway and the UK.

“It’s fun for me to see this exhibition [in Bodø], as it includes some works that haven’t been shown before. Particularly the monotypes, unique prints that we have made together with double signatures, are quite special”, Magne told the audience at the opening in Bodø Kunstforening.

“Some of these works were made in New York, some at my atelier in Asker, some at the Queen’s atelier at Mågerø, some in Helsingborg and some were made in Copenhagen.”

A gallery of pictures from the opening has been posted on Bodø Kunstforening’s Facebook page, along with two video clips of Magne speaking (Video 1 / Video 2).

Press reports from the opening include an article at bodonu.no and a short clip on NRK Nordland‘s local TV news.

The following day Magne made a visit to Kjerringøy near Bodø.

The final stop on the Texture exhibition tour is at Gulden Kunstverk in Steinberg, where it opens on 29 April.

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Sadly, this weekend also brought news that the poet Henning Kramer Dahl passed away on 7 March from heart failure, at the age of 54. He was part of a-ha’s inner circle and knew the band members from early on.

In 1986 Kramer Dahl wrote the book Så Blåser Det På Jorden together with Håkon Harket, which chronicled the beginnings of Bridges and a-ha in the late 70s and early 80s. He would later collaborate with Magne on a number of projects, including Blåtoneboulevardene (1997), Stjerneskutt (2004) and In Transit (2013).

He also co-wrote the song “East-Timor” for Morten’s Wild Seed album in 1995.

Magne, Håkon Harket, Lasse Kolsrud and Fredrik Skavlan have written an obituary about Kramer Dahl in Aftenposten. “We have lost a very special person, an important presence in our lives, and the world has lost a distinctive poetic voice and an extraordinary intellect”, they write in the obituary.

Magne interviewed in Krigsropet

Cover of Krigsropet, #9/2017

Magne is on the cover of this week’s issue of Krigsropet, which is the Salvation Army’s magazine in Norway. Inside there’s a 6-page interview with him about his Imprints sculpture park at Fornebu near Oslo, which opened in June last year.

(Update: The full interview is now also available online.)

The park is comprised of around 50 ceramic elements, including the world’s biggest jars, with many of them incorporating Magne’s own poetry.

“Using those poems is somewhat risky, as they are of a personal, private character. In my way of writing there’s an inherent melancholy. That’s the case with a-ha as well. We look at melancholy as a force, a longing, something that liberates you from something heavy”, Magne tells Krigsropet.

The interviewer mentions how people have pointed out that his writings are often influenced by religion and theology.

“Wondering and searching for meaning is closely related to faith. Shifting between doubt and faith is a necessary principle to embody a message. I have done a lot of reading and I use things from my own upbringing and culture. As a visual artist I visit the churches in every city I go to, to get inspiration. There isn’t much difference between sitting in an atelier or a chapel, transported away from all outside noise. In concentration I find silence. The church room opens the door to contemplation, it creates a room for thought. But I’m more into asking the right questions than finding the right answers. Faith and doubt is something you’re always thinking about”, Magne says.

From Krigsropet, #9/2017

The interview also mentions that new features have been added to the sculpture park in recent months, in the form of clouds of steam that suddenly appear, to make the sculptures appear as living and breathing entities.

“This isn’t a park that shows itself off, instead it’s hiding. Sometimes we have to walk around and search for things. It’s a journey of discovery, and I hope it triggers a sense of wonder.”

As always, Magne is busy with a variety of different projects. In January he spent a week in Denmark with HM Queen Sonja, continuing their collaborative work on graphic prints. Their joint exhibition Texture will continue its tour at Bodø Kunstforening in Bodø (9 March – 2 April) and Gulden Kunstverk in Steinberg (29 April – 21 May).

And this summer he will hold a solo exhibition at Galleri G Guddal in Rosendal (1 July – 20 August).

Magne appears on new Janove Ottesen album

Janove Ottesen and Magne in Bergen, May 2016.
(Posted by Ottesen on Instagram)

Kaizers Orchestra vocalist Janove Ottesen released his second solo album Artisten & Marlene in Norway on 10 February.

According to a review of the album in newspaper Fædrelandsvennen (for subscribers only), Magne makes a guest appearance on one of the songs:

“[The song] ‘I Natt Blir Du Fri’ includes some very a-ha sounding synths, played by none other than Magne Furuholmen.”

The album was recorded at Duper Studio in Bergen last year.

Ottesen posted a picture of himself and Magne on Instagram last year, in connection with the a-ha concert in Bergen in May. He also attended Apparatjik’s Day of the Dead performance the following month.

The 15-track Artisten & Marlene album is available on CD, double vinyl and digitally.

In other news, Magne appeared at the Stockholm Furniture Fair on Friday, to present his new “Imprints” limited edition rug collection. See some pictures from the furniture fair here and here.

For more info on the rug collection, check out a new interview with Magne by Architectural Digest.

Magne presents new exhibition and art book with Queen Sonja

Magne and Queen Sonja in front of one of the prints they have made together

Magne and Queen Sonja in front of one of the prints they have made together

Magne was in Bergen last weekend, to present a joint exhibition with Her Majesty Queen Sonja. The two of them have been collaborating on a new series of prints over the last year and a half, which has resulted in an exhibition called Texture.

Their work on Texture started in New York in April 2015, when they did three days of experimenting at the Universal Limited Art Editions workshop on Long Island.

“The Queen and I met about thirteen years ago at one of my exhibitions”, Magne said in an interview with Scandinavian Traveler last month. “I found her curiosity inspiring. She is dedicated in ways I rarely see in others, with an elastic and inquisitive mind. It was her curiosity that formed the basis of our artistic relationship.”

“Her personality and dedication to printmaking has allowed me to relate to her as a colleague and not as a queen. When we collaborated on prints, there was never any need to establish a set of roles. At the same time she wanted me to give her honest feedback”, Magne told A-magasinet on Friday, which featured a 12-page article about the project.

As well as opening the exhibition, they could present a brand new coffe-table book about their artistic collaboration called Grafikkens vinger. The Norwegian edition of the book, which features text by Lars Saabye Christensen, can be ordered from bokkilden.no. The book will also be released internationally.

The Texture exhibition is on display at Grieghallen in Bergen until 3 September, and can later be seen in several other cities:

– Galleri Ismene, Trondheim (23 September–23 October 2016)
– The Paul Stolper Gallery, London (27 September–23 October 2016)
– Ålesund Kunstforening, Ålesund (5 November–4 December 2016)
– Bodø Kunstforening, Bodø (9 March–2 April 2017)
– Gulden Kunstverk, Steinberg (22 April–14 May 2017)

Video clips:
Working on Texture – official video
Vestlandsrevyen – from the opening in Bergen (starts at 8 minutes)

Articles:
NRK Hordaland     Bergens Tidende     Dagbladet
Aftenposten     Budstikka     Kongehuset.no     TV2/Kongebloggen
Paris Match     A-magasinet (subscribers only)

Magne’s ‘Beatles’ score to be released on CD and vinyl in Japan

Cover of the Japanese CD version

Cover of the Japanese CD version

In connection with the release of the 2014 movie Beatles in Japan – where it’s called Yesterday – the film score by Magne Furuholmen will be released on CD and vinyl by the label Cinema-kan.

The CD is set for release on 7 September, while a limited edition vinyl LP with a different cover will be out on 5 October.

Magne’s score was only available digitally in Norway, so this is the first time it’s released in physical formats.

Both the CD and the LP can be pre-ordered from amazon.co.jp.

The movie itself premieres in Japan on 1 October.

Apparatjik’s “Day of the Dead” in Bergen

Apparatjik in Bergen, with striking visuals by Void (Picture by Thor Brødreskift)

Apparatjik in Bergen, with striking visuals by Void
(Picture by Thor Brødreskift)

Apparatjik presented a unique and captivating “Day of the Dead” performance at Grieghallen in Bergen on Friday, June 3rd, as part of Festspillene i Bergen (Bergen International Festival).

Magne Furuholmen, Martin Terefe and Jonas Bjerre were joined on stage by Spanish singer Concha Buika, a string quartet, plus Karl Oluf Wennerberg on drums and Even Ormestad on bass – all of them in appropriate face paint.

Songs played included “Deadbeat”, “Quiz Show”, “Look Kids”, “Arrow and Bow”, “Snow Crystals”, some new songs and songs by Buika in Spanish. Among the highlights was a Spanish version of Magne’s “In a Quiet Corner” – here is a little sample of it:

 
Buika’s intense presence and vocal delivery really took the show to another level, enhanced by the four solid musicians on string instruments.

The scenography by Void was amazing, with projections onto layers of see-through fabric on stage creating a stunning 3D-effect. Whereas the visuals Void created for a-ha’s “Afterglow” concert didn’t live up to the expectations, this time it really worked wonderfully.

Near the end of the show, Magne strapped on his electric guitar and rocked out with Karl Oluf and Even – listen here:

 
Although the Julia Pastrana story was merely hinted at, this was a spectacular, bizarre, funny, innovative and moving performance which will probably never be seen again in this form.

“Normally, a production like this would have been set up as a tour to try and make money on it. But we’d rather spend all the money and then some, to make it as cool as possible for one single night”, Magne told Bergensavisen.

Watch a short video clip from “Day of the Dead” on the Facebook page of Festspillene i Bergen. There’s also a photo gallery.

Earlier in the day, Magne, Martin and Jonas took a stroll around Bergen in full Apparatjik costume, together with Buika, inviting people to the concert. Bergensavisen has pictures from this and an interview with Magne. There’s also a video clip by Festspillene on Facebook.

Bergens Tidende had an interview with Buika on Friday (subscribers only), where she talked about her work with Apparatjik.

“I love this collaboration. The guys are crazy. This is one of the most incredible things I’ve done in recent years”, she says.

Buika, who first performed with Apparatjik at the opening of Fosnavåg Kulturhus in October 2014, got involved with the guys through Martin Terefe who produced her latest album.

“Martin asked me. And then Magne called. We met, and there was an instant chemistry. Magne is a maestro, a master. He is full of ideas and is able to change direction in seconds. That’s how I love to work.”

“Marginalia” opens in Oslo

Magne and Lars Saabye Christensen have collaborated on 27 monotypes together

Magne and Lars Saabye Christensen have collaborated on 27 monotypes together

Magne’s latest exhibition Marginalia, for which he has collaborated with renowned Norwegian author Lars Saabye Christensen, opened on Thursday 4 February at Galleri Norske Grafikere in Oslo.

Marginalia consists of a selection of monotypes on paper they have worked on together, where Saabye Christensen has contributed sentences in Norwegian, plus Magne’s own larger monotypes on canvas, where he has used words in English.

The artist and the author

The artist and the author in front of their works
(Picture by NTB Scanpix)

“We speak the same language. We wanted to do something together in the same room, combining Magne’s visual world and my own literary world”, Saabye Christensen says in an interview with NTB.

The idea for the exhibition came about through what they call a “common grieving process”, after the film version of Saabye Christensen’s book Beatles didn’t end up as they had hoped. “Not all visions were realized”, Magne says dryly.

This is not the first time the two of them have worked together. In addition to composing the score for Beatles in 2014, Magne composed the score for Ti Kniver i Hjertet (with Kjetil Bjerkestrand) in 1994, which was based on a book by Saabye Christensen.

When Magne held his Foci exhibition in 2004, Saabye Christensen wrote the foreword in the exhibition catalogue. And in 1991 he collaborated with a-ha on the NRK TV special Østenfor sol og vestenfor måne.

Marginalia is open until 28 February.

Media coverage:
TV: NRK Østlandssendingen
Radio: P2-portrettet (25-minute interview with Magne)
Instagram: Picture 1    Picture 2

Apparatjik to perform at Bergen International Festival in June

Magne Furuholmen, Martin Terefe, Concha Buika and Jonas Bjerre, as they are presented on the Bergen International Festival's website

Magne Furuholmen, Martin Terefe, Concha Buika and Jonas Bjerre, as they are presented on the Bergen International Festival’s website

In addition to being the new chairman for Bergen International Festival, Magne will also be performing at this year’s festival together with Apparatjik.

This will be a special performance, inspired by the true story of “the ape woman” Julia Pastrana, where Magne, Jonas Bjerre and Martin Terefe will be joined by Concha Buika and Void. Some info from the festival’s website:

The Day of the Dead is a colorful Mexican festival that eases the spiritual passing of those who have died. This festival is central when Apparatjik, in collaboration with Void and Mexican artists Laura Anderson Barbata and Concha Buika, present a staged concert production to honor Julia Pastrana both as an individual and an artist.

“The story of Julia Pastrana is one of the most fascinating stories I have ever come across, both as an artist and as a fellow human being”, Magne said back in 2013, when he announced plans of an opera based on the Julia Pastrana story.

The Apparatjik performance will be held at Grieghallen on 3 June 2016. Tickets are available now from billettservice.no.

Magne appointed new chairman for Bergen International Festival

Magne interviewed in Bergen, 2 February

Magne interviewed in Bergen, 2 February

Magne Furuholmen has been appointed new chairman for Festspillene i Bergen (Bergen International Festival), for the period 2016 – 2019.

This was announced at a press conference in Bergen today, where Magne was present alongside the festival’s artistic director Anders Beyer.

For two weeks in May and June each year, Bergen International Festival presents a variety of performances within music, theatre, dance, opera and visual art. Being the chairman is a prestigious position, which will take up much of Magne’s time in the coming years.

The Norwegian Minister of Culture, Linda Hofstad Helleland, says in a press release posted on a-ha.com:

Bergen International Festival is a central power source in Norwegian art and culture, and I am pleased that one of Norway’s foremost and versatile artists has accepted the important position of chairman. With his international network and wide experience, Magne Furuholmen will strengthen the Festival in the years to come.

Magne himself says he is honoured to accept the new position:

The position as chairman for Bergen International Festival is a great honour and a prestigious national responsibility. The high level of artistic quality maintained throughout the years is very impressive. My role as chairman will be to facilitate further development of the festival’s international orientation, and build on the good work by the administration and former chairman.

Magne tells Bergensavisen that he was surprised when he was asked to take the position a few weeks ago:

“I didn’t say yes right away. This was a question that I needed some time to think about. I was worried whether I was ready for such a big task. At the same time I felt I would have been a coward if I declined.”

Bergen International Festival 2016 is held from 25 May to 8 June.

Links to Norwegian media coverage:
NRK Hordaland: Vil gjøre Festspillene til verdens viktigste festival
Bergensavisen: – Ville vært feigt å si nei
Bergens Tidende: A-ha-Magne blir ny leder for Festspillene
Vårt Land: Furuholmen: – Ville vært feigt å si nei
Dagbladet: A-ha-stjerne blir styreleder for Festspillene i Bergen
Budstikka: a-ha-Furuholmen ny styreleder for Festspillene

Video: NRK Vestlandsrevyen

“Flags In The Air”

Cover artwork

Cover artwork

Magne’s youngest son Filip Clements has recently been posting some of his own music on Soundcloud. The latest track “Flags In The Air” is a song written by Magne, and recorded as a duet between the two of them.

Magne posted a link to the song on Instagram today:

“hohoho…as a little yule-tide treat, head over to soundcloud – for a father/son duet of ‘flags in the air’. i originally wrote this song for the a-ha album, but no one else wanted it on the record, so instead here is a demo to complete(?) your happy holidays. 🎅 merry xmas to my loyal insta-followers!”

a-ha.com has additional info about the song, including the lyrics.

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