Magnhild Øen Nordahl




In her solo exhibition "Standard Primitives", Magnhild Øen Nordahl presents three new works made especially for this exhibition at Hordaland kunstsenter: A sculpture series, an animation film and a video work.

The exhibition title Standard Primitives is a term appropriated from digital 3D modeling software, denoting the basic components of the program’s library of construction modules: A sphere, a cylinder, a cone, and so forth.  

In Nordahl’s new sculpture series entitled Standard Primitives and Extended Primitives, her point of departure is these digital and seemingly neutral modules, manufacturing them one by one from wood, rock, glass, Styrofoam and other materials.

The animation film In World View shows a selection of sculptures rotating on their own axis. Rotation is a recurring element in Nordahl’s practice, and the act of giving shape in general often involves rotation: Wheel throwing ceramics, using a circular saw or a rolling pin, drilling. 

In the video work The Distance to the Horizon, we find ourselves at sea, with only waves and the horizon in sight. The work documents traveling from a given point at sea, all the way to the point one initially could see as the horizon.

Is it possible to experience the roundness of the earth, to sense it through our corporeal perception and ability of movement? Could you get closer to understanding taught theory and cosmic proportions through the use of tools in your hands? Together, these three works explore the relation between physical matter and abstract idea – between tangible and virtual sculpting.


Artist talk, Saturday 11th of June at 11:00

On the day after the opening, Hordaland Kunstsenter welcomes you to a public conversation between Magnhild Øen Nordahl and the artist and writer, Hans Carlsson, who has written a text especially for Nordahl’s exhibition.


Magnhild Øen Nordahl (b. 1985, Ulsteinvik) is an artist living and working in Bergen. She holds a Master’s degree from the Royal Institute of Art, Stockholm (2014), and a Bachelor’s degree from Bergen Academy of Art and Design (2010). Nordahl’s exhibition activity in the recent years include NNA-NNA-NNA at the Astrup Fearnley Museum, Oslo and at Stavanger Art Museum (2015-2016), The Norwegian Sculpture Biennale Art Belongs to Those Who See It at The Vigeland Museum, Oslo (2015), Soft Measures vat WIELS Contemporary Arts Centre, Brussels (2014), This House at Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2013), and Statics at NO. 5, Bergen Kunsthall (2012). Nordahl has also been working with art in public space, recently with the sculpture entitled Parallell Sogndal on commision by Sogndal municipality in Sogn og Fjordane County, Norway (2015).


The exhibition is generously supported by Bergen City, Bildende kunstneres hjelpefond,  the Arts Council Norway, and Bergen Centre for Electronic Arts.


Hordaland Art Centre based in Bergen, Norway was established 1976 as the first artist run art centre in Norway. Its activities are based around the exhibition programme with equal emphasis on seminars, presentations and dialogue. Since 1987 Hordaland Art Centre has hosted a Nordic residency programme, from 2008 also open to international artists, curators, writers and other art professionals.