20220516

We build a kiln with Elina and Monika. The construction was simple. Old bricks formed a square base for the fire (~40x40x20) with a half-a-brick size vent on the side opposing the opening. Bricks were laid to form a ~60cm shaft and a steel grill built in the middle. We used ceramic tiles on top of the grill to support the ten(ish) items we burned. The shaft was covered with a steel plate to keep the temperature. The opening had a partial brick door and holes in the kiln walls were filled using a clay/sand mixture for insulation. I had small bellow for building up temperature and a electric fan for building high heats (from Jesse).

The firing had three phases. 2 hours low heat using only wood as the fuel (this failed as the temperature rise too fast breaking an item), 2 hours of medium heat with more wood and energy form the bellow pumping up the temperature and 2 hours extreme heat with charcoal and the electric fan for extreme temperatures. We suspect we reached temperatures above 1100°C because a store bought glazing designated for 1050°C we used was burned. Some pieces which were closest to the heat also burned and showed charred glazed like surfaces, indicating the clay turned into lava.

While heating we practised forging using scrap metal bits and rail track for an anvil.

It took a day to build the kiln and prepare the firewood and a day for the firing. The items were left cooling over night. We used various clays and mixtures for the objects but clay from Kurängen spring worked best. We suspect it has sand particles in it which prevent extreme shrinkage, helping the items to not break in the heating. A thick jug I made from clay (partially found from the basin of the spring and three meters north east from it) is thick enough that contains water even without glazing.

We will do a new firing next month for glazing and making new things. For the glazing we’ll use a 1:2 ash and 1:2 clay mixture. The ash is from wood produced by the first burning and the clay from Kurängen. I’m in the process of washing the ash. The recipe and science comes from Phil Berneburg. We’ll build a bigger kiln and aim for a steadier pre-heating phase.

Using clay from a spring, to drink its water completes and begins a ritual a geoartistic-cycle. It feels powerful and I love that the process of preparing clay objects is thoroughly holistic: Using ashes from the first burning for the second burning glazing feels like a gaiaistic design. We also prepared small cups, which I’ll built a wooden tray for. The long term plan is deposit the items submerged into the Kurängen spring water, were they can be used by visitors and forest dwellers. The design of the items is utilitarian. The cups which we made don’t have any straight edges, which works well for the forest as it does not have any straight edges either.

A visit to the spring in long due. I should groom the garden of peat I planted.

20210317

p3rm46r4ff171 carvings have been executed successfully. Together with Jesse, we managed to produce a little above 45 tags to the Kannistonkallio quarry. Most graffiti we worked on was at ground level, some were reached by climbing and others from the top of the hill. Sizes varied, most text and images being below a meter in heigh and spanning one to three meters. We used mostly chisels and a few outlines were made with an angle grinder. Some stylistic experiments with steel rods were made too. We are currently preparing to print an image of the graffiti for the Performing the Fringe exhibition. There is also a plan to publish some teasers on the Pori Art Museum instagram. Here is a low resolution video showing highlights. Music is by tyops.

Ruosniemi hills are located 7km north-east from the Pori centre. There are a few Bronze Age constructions in the area such as the Ruosniemi metsasarat burial mounts. A corner of the hills called Kannistonkallio (38m high) was established as a quarry in the 1920ties. Granite from the site was used for the construction of the Pori bridge (completed in 1926). During the Continuation War German troops operating in Finland forced Soviet war prisoners to work the mine and to produce material for an expansion of the Pori Airport. After the war the quarry was used by the city for producing gravel and an entrepreneur manufactured pavement at the site. Local kids stole dynamite from the quarry storages and practised ski jumping on the hills.

Some time in the 80ties the pit which the mining operations produced filled with water and became a popular swimming site. The pond is known as “Ankkalampi” (Duckpond) and it is believed that the water seeps from a groundwater source. Crabs and fish have been planted to the pond. The quarry is mentioned in the Geological Survey of Finland database and photographs of the Ruosniemen sepelilouhos are dated to before 1996. Some texts in the current graffiti date the writings to 1987. Illustrations and texts are spread along the over 100m long hill edge. In 2018 a pair entrepreneurs established a outdoor centre called FinnDome to the site. FinnDome houses guest in dome-shelters close to the pond.

The selection of graffiti we engraved was based on intuition and we worked independently to cover the vast area. Initially I was inspired to engrave texts which were made to hard to reach locations. Engraving text to hard to reach spots was a way of connecting with the original authors. In some cases I didn’t engrave texts because the spot had required tremendous courage to reach. I wanted to leave them undisturbed. The majority of the texts we wrote are names and nicknames like ana, anzu, eero, erno, hanna, lepis, limppu, miia, niina, riikka, tero and so on. There was a considerable amount of love confessions and some like emmi <3 samppa got engraved. Others were left untouched because fading-love can be a beautiful process.

Looking at photos from the site most of the graffiti we engraved were written in plain handwriting and a significant portion are names of girls. We were also motivated in engraving asemic utters like pippui, oky-mus-porkka and odd illustrations. Some might have initially been parts of longer texts which had eroded over time. Some focus was also given to proto-global graffiti signs such as zeni, zlim and hamp. These sound like something kids born in the eighties might imagine rappers saying (I threw a tag which read zikke around -93, it was written so that it could be read as zakke and derived from my old name Sakke). The letter Z is exotic for the Finnish language.

We also engraved brand names such as hilux, bimmer (and possibly JAPA). In this context, it felt like the authors had written them as prays of sorts. Or perhaps social pressure had forced the authors to produce brand names instead of opinions. The shape of the quarry formed an opening with two distinct stages. The setting invited a dramatic reading of the original texts. It felt like the original authors had channeled deep feels. There were some crude markings and signs which showed that the authors had been working with their haterade, fears and desires. To reach some spots the authors have performed life-threatening climbs.

I think the audience we made this work for does not resite in our time. The audience we worked for occupies a beautiful ruin, where everything we currently posses has been assembled into piles. This landscape affords them novel tools which surface periodically from the ground. The tools are yielded for unimaginable purposes. I think this audience is what we have been working for when we’ve framed various Ore.e Ref. activities as an “archaeology of the future”. We investigate today as a remain and imagine our stuff from the perspective of an other intelligence. This speculative intelligence is not of our own invention. They are folk of the Pensastuulikansa (Bushwindpeople) as defined by Outi Heiskanen and they don’t live in a particular time. They merge occasionally in the form of good humour (with no joke).

Outi was a kid during the second world war and witnessed how scarcity turned her mother into a craftsperson. Outi’s mother could, for example manufacture soap from anything. Making “soap from anything” is the most innovative practice I can dream of. I think with Jesse, we imagine that the audience we are reaching out to, are folk who have developed mindsets, which afford them skills to use the tools and materials they discover from their surroundings, beyond the semiotic functions these items are currently assigned. A possibility for semiotic reconfigurations has been discussed before during the Performing the Fringe excursions and the process is presented as a core strategy of the Crusaders’ School of Pure Humour Without Joke.

Playing with semantic changes was typical of the Crusader School, as was the unclear delineation of events that grew out of one person’s spontaneous idea and was then developed and variegated by the entire community. In their openness – in terms of both authorship and chronological delimitation – they are happenings in the purest sense of the word, although this term is rarely applied to the Crusaders’ activities.

In our case, the folk of the Pensastuulikansa will be able to read the engravings and make sense or assign meaning to them.

The quarry can be found at Liitostie 92, Pori. 61.50567, 21.87771.

2020020

A selection of the Trans-Siberian Railway -Sound Archive is now available on Freesound. There are 35 clips (1.7gb) and I think the gps data mapping of the recordings alone tells a nice story. I’ve included Helsinki as a part of the Trans-Siberian railway network… As it was intended when the Tsar had our rails build. The archive would work great as background noise for a train-story/documentary or for train themed games. I think some clips might work as chopped samples too. The indexing of the files is a bit messy but there are real gems in the mix. My favorite clips are:

I’m listening to them while writing and I can feel the sounds vibrating my phone, which makes the clips feel material, like thin peals of the trip. Miinas note that the archive is linked with geology (or the process of harvesting geological samples for profit) feels acute. I like that the samples have interference sounds and occasionally my hands can be heard touching the mic. The interference makes the surrounding medias physical, it shows the limits of the recording technology and adds to the appeal. There is a clip were the microphone passes an x-ray machine for example. The material disturbances make me think of Viktor Toikkanen when he pushed his laptop to memory overload glitch territory when live-coding.

Our In Various Stages of Ruins exhibition series continues at Alkovi. The current exhibition titled Toxicity will be build gradually through the end of the summer towards the fall. Currently there are photos from the Town of Asbest on display, my humble C-Cassette recording we made with Jesse titled Two Men Coughing in the Woods (2020) and a set of DIY orthopedic supports I made for my feet (mentioned earlier).

Post-ore* (noun)

/poʊst ɔːr/

  1. Multimetal smelting and welding spillage blobs accumulated to the proximity of furnaces, pouring channels, storage units and waste disposal facilities, over the lifespan of a foundry, casting facility or smithy.
  2. Metal objects that are only worth the materials that are made from. Repurposing of such objects is “post-ore refining”, meaning the extraction of metals from wasteful objects. E.g. Gold extraction from discarded computer circuit boards or repurposing of a decorative steel things. Also unsalvable metal crafts projects, sacrificial metal brace/support used in the construction of other items.
  3. Metals which have been bonded with nonmetallic substances. Salvaging or repurposing such materials is labor intensive and deemed unwise under contemporary economical terms. Post-ore can be found in composite objects assembled from an array of materials (lesser metals, plastics, wood etc.) and hence not accepted by contemporary scrapyard entrepreneurs: “Nah.. We’re not a dump, that thing is only good for post-ore”.
  4. Post-ore age: A future human time when people resort exclusively to ground metals (and occasional meteorites) as their supply. Enough metals have been pulled from the depths of the planet to supply people for any currently imaginable human future. The amount of metals on the the top of earths crust, serves as an insurance that humans will never return to pre-metal ages. No culture or human group can ever be “bombed back to the stone age”.

* Term coined by Jesse when visiting an old foundry and discovering multimetal ingots (iron, copper, aluminum etc.) which had been produced by decades of spillage. He also spotted a fireplace-base-cake containing lumps of aluminum, copper etc. developed from someones efforts in clearing metals from their plastic housing by burning them on open fire. Finnish translation: Jälkimalmi or jälki-malmi.

20190701

Wrote a summer text for Mustekala.info Puu kaatuu metsässä – Tunnelmia Kiilan äänipäiviltä Kemiönsaarelta [Tree Falling in the Woods – Vibes from the Kiila International Sound-Days at Kemiönsaari]. An easygoing review which includes a short history of the event and an overview of all of the works presented this year. Includes some fancy casually post-humanistic sentences: “[their piece] explored constructions, which enable the production of sound in bodies, animals and other wind instruments” (concerning a performance by Ragnhild May and Kristoffer Raasted). Also summarized Yan Jun‘s from last year performance which I wrote shortly about. Got to interview Tolvi, Juho Laitinen (got a micro-lecture on art!) and Teemu Lehmusruusu for the text too.

Jesse introduced me to the concept of post-ore (jälki-malmi). He came up with the concept after spotting scum with aluminum and copper traces in the lot of an old foundry. Its a very useful concept for Ore.e Refineries. Post-Timber works too (see this crafty palindrome as a performance). We build a sauna (using post-timbre) with him in two days. Needs insulation but gives a good löyly.

Breadboarded a Microphonie (Music Thing Modular) and made a unit on perfboard too. Turns out my DC 5-24v to Dual Power 12v -12v 5v -5v 3.3v is incredibly noisy. Works ok, not as loud as I hoped and a bit noisy (most likely because of my building skills). Using a battery works cleaner. Tested it with my μZEUS too and begun to build a (water)capacitor (will be dry tomorrow).