Overture (helios) by Dodda Maggý at the Royal Danish Opera House

BERG Contemporary
May 22, 2019 2:29PM

On October 10th 2018 Dodda Maggý premiered her videowork, Overture (helios), at the Royal Danish Opera House in Copenhagen, Denmark. The work was commissoned by The Royal Danish Theatre on behalf of the Danish parliament and is created as a visual component with Carl Nielsen‘s Helios-ouverture, opus 17, from 1903. At the premier the videowork was accompanied by live performance of Nielsen‘s composition by The Royal Danish Orchestra.

Overture (helios) accompanied by Carl Nielsen‘s Helios-ouverture, opus 17, from 1903.

Overture (helios) is baroque and maximal, yet meditative, exploring the ethereal and the material. Using slightly eclectic material to create an experience toward the sublime, playfully engaging the viewer through a combination of scale and complexity of shapes and movements. The building blocks of the visuals are scanned gemstones. The stones combined create multiple structures that interact and interweave. Overture (helios) is created with experimental animation techniques. The gemstones are manually animated in a digital environment that emits a handmade yet extremely intricate quality. The stones might be regarded as color pigments where stones and notes are as particles or units. Forms grow from a single stone forming complex structures into a multitude of intricate shapes that are constantly growing and changing into overlapping patterns and asymmetrical geometric forms with handmade imperfections, creating illusions of 3D forms with 2D imagery.

Dodda Maggý, Overture (helios), 2018.

While using neurological, natural and cosmic patterns found in nature, translating them into audiovisual form, Dodda Maggý references some of mankind’s most ancient philosophical concepts in her work. Her abstract take on scientifically inspired aesthetics can be viewed from a point of ‘Musica Universalis’ (literally translating as universal music, also known as Music of the spheres or Harmony of the Spheres), the age old concept that regards proportions in the movements of celestial bodies— the Sun, Moon and planets—as a form of music. Although not literally audible to the human ear, the ‘Musica Universalis’ can be thought of as a harmonic, mathematical and a religious concept, having inspired many great thinkers of the past and continued to appeal to scholars and the way they thought about music until the end of the Renaissance era. Influenced by their ideas and further investigation that suggests some orbital motion within the natural world has pre-determined specific proportions (described as orbital resonance), Dodda Maggý seeks to reflect on these ideas in both the visual and audio shaping of her work, meanwhile reflecting on the human existence and the ideas mankind has made up to make sense of the world around itself.

Overture (helios) is a part of a new series of works that Dodda Maggý is currently working on. While (helios) is silent, other work in the Overture-series have sampled instruments, creating a complex interplay between visual and musical structures.

BERG Contemporary