Magnús Pálsson – Gapassipi Book+CD (signed)



40-page hardcover book + CD.
Edition of 200 signed & numbered copies.

Magnús Pálsson (b.1929) is one of Iceland’s premier artists; a national treasure. Sculptor, sound poet, performer and inspirational teacher, Magnús comes from a strong Fluxus background, where he and his clan forged the beginnings of conceptualism and concrete poetry.

“Gapassipi (1995) was installed in the then-recently constructed Reykjavik City Hall, which is situated on the lake Tjörnin in central Reykjavik. Exhibited from February 25th – March 10th, the work was commissioned from Pálsson by the Icelandic branch of the Nordic Visual Arts Association to coincide with a meeting of the Nordic Council of Ministers. The Gapassipi installation featured a 30-sq. meter, triangular formation of broken glass laid upon the floor, level with the lake, as well as eight loudspeakers positioned throughout the space, emanating two vocal tracks pre-recorded by Pálsson. The first track consisted of Pálsson reciting vignettes from his memories surrounding Tjörnin. The second comprised, in Pálsson’s words, a loosely chanted “appeal to the gander of the lake.” The gander in question, the Greylag Goose, is one of several bird species that frequent Tjörnin yearly, and whose V-shaped migration pattern was evoked by the triangular array of glass upon the floor of the City Hall.

The most distinguishing attribute of Gapassipi is that both texts were written and recorded by Pálsson not in regular Icelandic, but rather the colloquial “P-Language,” a secret language spoken between Icelandic children in efforts to avoid adult comprehension.