Branching Out

Artists of various disciplines are increasingly reaching out and incorporating other artforms in their activities and creations. ‘Forgreninger’ is a site-specific artwork created by Klejs & Rønsholdt for the Fredensborg School, Vilhelmsro. It consists of a bronze outdoor sculpture with internally piped water and light along with five indoor sound installations in the school’s enclosed glass corridors.

Klejs & Rønsholdt describe the project as follows:

An artificial bronze ‘tree’ is placed on the square in front of the main entrance of the school precisely at the spot where a real one should have grown – up through the hole next to the stairs. The shape of the tree is modelled after the structure of the human bronchi, and its organic forms provide a counterpoint to the straight lines of the school buildings and the forest of uniform concrete columns under the square. Nozzles have been placed at the extremes of the tree branches and every quarter of an hour atomized water particles create a canopy of water dust. The nozzles are surrounded by LEDs which illuminate the water particles with colors that change according to temperature, thus changing the tree along with the seasons.

The tree in the (school) yard traditionally marks a strong central point as well as a tradition which refers to the idea of the ‘tree of life’. Here in the context of the school, it is also a reference to photosynthetic conversion of light, water and energy to organic matter – analogous to the forming process by which raw nature is converted to culture through education.

The sound of Ramifications is installed in the glass corridors connecting the different modules of the school building. The sound and musical identity is different in the five glass bridges while the structure remains the same: The music rises from low to high, as imaginary branches that unfold in sound or water that is sucked up from underground. Or lungs that are filled with air. When the music reaches its peak, the corridors become silent and outside a canopy of sprayed water unfolds from the bronchial tree. After a quarter of an hour it starts all over again. Ramifications thereby creates a slow, imaginary breathing – the school's breathing and pulse.


Klejs & Rønsholdt is visual artist Signe Klejs and composer Niels Rønsholdt.

Read more about the project (in Danish) on the Forgreninger blog.