Jingles (Grazer Kunstverein, spring, summer, autumn, winter) 2017–2020

Chris Evans & Morten Norbye Halvorsen
12” vinyl LP in 6 signed editions of 25 copies each, with a series of silkscreened covers. This album is available for 30 euros via Grazerkunstverein.Bandcamp or all six colors for 150 euros available from Grazer Kunstverein at office@grazerkunstverein.org

A download link is included on the insert.

'Jingles (Grazer Kunstverein, spring, summer, autumn, winter) 2017–2020' was devised by Chris Evans as a series of short musical compositions—varying in duration between 0.74 and 28 seconds—that are activated by sensor upon entry and egress, to cumulatively proclaim and broadcast the arrival and departure of each visitor to Grazer Kunstverein. Evans invited artist & musician Morten Norbye Halvorsen to collaborate on compositions that would correspond with Grazer Kunstverein’s seasonally evolving artistic programme and to create sequences between the institution’s six entrance doors.

Originally inspired by bass melodies used for interludes in American sitcoms—that connotate scenic transition—the Jingles were made from percussive sounds built around Evans’ basslines. In single takes or edited recordings, techniques such as scraping, bottleneck slides and ebow were used percussively and then augmented with synthesised sounds. In the spring season, Shepard tones, sine-waves, and modal synthesis are introduced followed by field recordings present in the summer season. Filter envelopes, clave, tubes and resampling feature in the autumn season and for the final season—winter— white noise replicates wind noise and an ebow used on bass guitar mimics the call of a deer.

This collection of work is published as a 12” vinyl LP by Grazer Kunstverein, in 6 signed editions of 25 copies each, for which Evans has made a series of silkscreened covers featuring each of the institution’s 6 doors. The A-side is a recording of each Jingle in sequence by season, and for the B-side Norbye Halvorsen has produced an edit of the compositions. This edit opens with a vocoder like bassline followed by acoustic sounds from bass played with an ebow—imitating a deer call that features on the track as the lead synth. We hear an acid squelch, a campfire banjo strum and an auto clave followed by a real deer cry—from the spring season of Jingles—which was recorded on the Curonian spit on the Baltic Sea.

Since the original commission, the work has developed into a series that has been produced for Markus Luettgen, Dusseldorf (2019); Hong Gah Museum, Taipei (2019); SALT Galata, Istanbul (2018); Kunsthalle Oslo (2018); CAN Centre d’art Neuchâtel, Switzerland (2018), Para Site, Hong Kong (2017) and Fórum Eugénio de Almeida in Évora, Portugal (2017). As part of this evolution of the work, Evans first asks after a host’s financial stability. If the host institution’s financial situation is stable, a farmer is asked to mimic a non-specific percussive phrase, if it is unstable, an accountant is asked to do the same. A TV bass-line is then added to complete the jingle.