It dives the deepest seas of the world. In total darkness it hunts its pray. On its head the circular scars tell stories about many encounters with an almost unknown creature. It lives most of its life far away from shore at the open oceans. There it is seen resting in the light of the surface, clearing its lungs and gathering oxygen for yet another dive into the blue abyss underneath. In its head it carries the largest brain to ever have existed. But what does think about – the sperm whale?
When not Bound by Gravity it is Possible to Grow Almost Indefinitely Large is a project that takes place far away from human reach. The scene is set in the deep sea and to get there a dive through natural history and literature takes place. With the sperm whale, the biggest toothed whale – also the inspiration for Moby Dick by Melville, as our guide it takes us through its world where meetings with the unknown occur in the dark. This project is an ongoing examination into the mind of the sperm whale and it is lead through strange environments in order to understand new aspects of the world. By appropriating scientific methods to artistic techniques this project is characterized by a complex view into the world of the sperm as well as the world of man.
Lise Haurum stages the role of the amateur researcher with both omnipotent and naïve visions. By the means of intricate and subtle artist books, objects and a video she creates a piece of oceanography where the sperm whale and the giant squid remains as fantasies of the childhood as well as objects for projections of an almost transcendental level. – ARTIST MANGNUS BÄRTÅS
The sperm whale – physeter catodon, this wonder of the sea has for centuries driven mankind away from shore and on to the seas. With time the meetings between whale and man have changed from aggressive to curious. This change has furthered our knowledge about life mirroring and recognizing something familiar when looking at the sperm whale.
Slowly it dives. It is gone leaving only a velvet smooth circle on the surface. The immense grey body now swims to the bottom of the sea. Almost one third of that body is head. It is likely that when not bound by gravity it is possible to grow almost indefinitely large. Freed from gravity, freed from land and able to withhold the enormous pressure from the surrounding water masses it spends most of its live away from the surface disappearing in the vast oceans.