Greta Christensen and Camilla Sørensen – maybe better known as the artist duo “Vinyl-terror & -horror” – are collaborating with Bang & Olufsen in order to create a new installation for sound art biennale “Struer Tracks”. It is a collaboration that is inspiring the artists to dream bigger.
The collaboration between Bang & Olufsen and the artistic duo Vinyl-terror & -horror is something out of the ordinary. That is clear from the get-go.
Greta Christensen and Camilla Sørensen have agreed to an interview, but it must take place in a meeting room away from the research labs where the duo otherwise work alongside the employees of the factory. Bang & Olufsen does not let visitors into this sacred location in the huge building complex in Struer.
The two artists work together under the name “Vinyl-terror & -horror” where they focus on the relationship between objects and sound.
“This year Struer Tracks will be based in Struer harbor. So on our first research trip to Struer, we walked around the harbor and quickly discovered abandoned buildings, old machines and harbor objects – amongst other an old, unused, assembly line, containers, boxes for fish and a pattern of black ruts in the asphalt – All various signs or objects that points to activities that have taken place independently of each other, but which also tells a storie about the life that takes place in this area, when we are not there. It is these fragments of overlapping narratives that we will continue to work on in our new site-specific work for Struer Tracks 2021” Greta and Camilla explains.
Camilla and Greta further explains that they will turn these fragments or overlapping narratives, into a soundtrack that will become part of an installation with a series of modified speakers, which also appear as their own distinctive characters, with their own aesthetic expression, that brings stories to life.
Reusing functions from B&O inventions
When Camilla and Greta visited Struer for the first time, it quickly became clear how much the Bang & Olufsen DNA is integrated in the small northern town. “We encountered concepts such as the ‘B&O spirit’ and ‘entrepreneurial imagination’. The latter in many ways also characterize our own practice and we thought it was obvious to incorporate their inventions and technical knowledge into the project” Camilla says.
The artist duo has spent some time at Bang & Olufsen looking into a mechanism that allows their speakers to rotate. This is something that the electronics manufacturer has a lot of experience in. They produce the same mechanism for their exclusive television sets.
“We can reuse some of the functions that they build into their products. Our products also have moving parts even though they are very different.” Greta Christensen says.
Same but different is maybe the way to explain Vinyl-Terror & -Horror’s experience during the week they have spent physically in Struer so far.
They live in Berlin, and when they make their installations there, they usually work together with a technician, who helps them with the technical side of things, but at Bang & Olufsen that is different.
Camilla and Greta in front of B&O headquarters in Struer with the car packed with speakers, ready for the trip back to Berlin
“Just come up with the ideas, then we will make it”
Camilla Sørensen and Greta Christensen have only just started working with Bang & Olufsen and researching Struer where their finished installation will be on display in the fall, but the mentality among the people has already made an imprint on the artists.
“People are extremely interested in helping out,” Greta Christensen says while Camilla Sørensen elaborates:
“Here you can feel that people are really supportive when something happens, but in the larger cities people are used to it, so they might not feel the same need to get involved with it,” she says.
The term entrepreneurial imagination has previously been used by the founders of Bang & Olufsen to describe the mentality and philosophy behind their business and products. A mentality where you continuously work to improve a product, and where you are not afraid to invent new ways of doing things.
The artists have been met with the same mentality in this collaboration, and they have been encouraged to simply dream big.
“They told us ‘Just come up with the ideas, then we will make it’.It was also a way to push our own ideas and move our process forward” Greta Christensen says.
What concretely will come out of the collaboration will be visible on Struer harbor during the third edition of Struer Tracks from August 20th till September 5th.