The best way to describe Finnbogi Pétursson‘s process of working is to imagine what the center of the earth might sound like. His focus is on silence as a concept for thought and being.
He uses his installations and objects as conduits to enhance the observerssensibilities to visually and physically experience a state of mind inducedby a moments of movement. These can be realized by various means.Pools of ink-black water rippled by the injection of sound, then illuminatedwith light, creating a mirrored reflection upon the walls surrounding the enclosedpool. It feels as if one is transported into another place where harmoniousneutrality is the new normal. Petursson began these water reflection pieces in1989 with his first public exhibition at the Reykjavik Living Art Museum in1991. His focus then as it is now, is to make sound visible.
The common denominator in all of Petursson’s works is his acute sense ofmateriality and how he creates his own dialogue between nature and science. Hethinks of himself as a visual artist whose focus is on realizing new ways ofcreatively presenting the properties and behavior of sound through hisexperiments with sine, square and triangle sound waves. Petursson’sinstallations have been referred to as nothing more or less then essential;moments that spare themselves of anything other then a limited set of variableswith the sound wave as his conceptual constant.
In Finnbogi’s Petursson’s most recent works the viewer sees and experiences adifferent type of measured sound through his use of metal plates made from brass,copper and aluminum. He combines these plates in pairs or as single objects,installed on to the wall in front of an amplifier, that generates a predesignedset of vibrations based on sound files that have been created to match thedifferent qualities of each metal plate by its weight, density, and thickness.These pieces resonate with a low oscillating sounds, sometimes as in pairsmerging their frequencies together or as single entities, yet both fill theroom with a deep sense of a physical presence. What makes these works ofPetursson so inviting is how they all seem to function so effortlessly, notburdened by the overwhelming weight of technical baggage. Minimalist andcentrally focused, theseworks regardless of their scale, draw upon what’s essential in any given momentin time. They reflect Petursson’s relationship to his Icelandic environmentboth physically, emotionally and culturally. He uses his pieces as bridges to asilent space within all of us, by tuning it to his own frequency.