The Standing Stones of Stenness and the Ring of Brodgar.

Monday September 8th 2014. Orkney Islands, Scotland.

Leaving from the Visitors Center in Kirkwall myself and Struan boarded the bus heading for Stromness. We alerted the driver we were going to the Stones of Stenness and the Ring of Brodgar. Heading west out of the city we were soon in the storybook-esque Scottish countryside complete with rolling green hills, stone houses and herds of grazing sheep. After about 40 minutes time the bus driver stopped and at a non-descript part of the road and said this was the stop. We stepped off and looked around and could see the Stones of Stenness in the distance.

The Stones of Stenness, Ring of Brodgar and the newly found Ness of Brodgar are all important Neolithic sites that are 5000 years old and predate Stonehenge.


A tour couch was there when we arrived but soon we had the site mostly to ourselves, after exploring the site and the “Farmhouse” foundation sites closer to the water we made our way up the road passing the “Watch stone” just before a bridge then we walked past the Ness of Brodgar which is closed to the public and is an active dig site. The Ness of Brodgar is an incredibly important find as it ties the two standing stone sites together and is the oldest Neolithic site in all of Europe. Continuing up the road we approached the Ring of Brodgar from the south giving us a great vantage point to see all of the stones in their mysterious glory before heading up the hill to walk amongst them. They are ancient and beautiful and a power that is difficult to translate into words. I spent time at each stone and took a good deal of photographs. Twenty seven of the original stones still stand. From time to time the sun would break through the cloudy skies and cast the most amazing light on the stones surface, their long shadows would darken and I was reminded of the possible intention of interaction with the heavens.

On our walk back we walked through the stones of Stenness once more, looking again for away to get to the location where the Odin Stone once stood but it seems to be on private property. I feel blessed to have seen these great stones and walked beneath them just as our ancestors did 5000 years ago.

Saint Magnus Church and The Site of The Execution.

Friday September 5th 2014 - Egilsay Island, Orkney, Scotland

We disembarked from Kirkwall Marina for a day sail to Egilsay Island. Onboard the Selkie was the Captain Celia Bull, her son Dylan, Howard Buxton, Selena Kuzman (Artist), Struan Kennedy (Artist), Suly Sanchez (Marine Biologist) and myself. We were off in search of the place where Saint Magnus was executed at the order of his cousin Earl Haakon. Soon I was raising the mainsail and shortly their after we were unfurling the Genoa jib. There was a nice wind blowing out of the (DIRECTION OF WIND) and the seas were quiet. Spending much of my time next to the Captain taking in as much as possible. As we sailed past the island of Shapinsay the Balfour Castle could be seen perched on the hillside. Continuing due North we passed several Cardinal Buoys painted Yellow and Black. Celia explained to me that the first meant safe passage to the south and the next meant safe passage to the north (on the chart this was noted by the arrangement of small triangles above the buoy icon).  Arriving at the anchorage at Egilsay we dropped the mainsail followed by the anchor. We were all then transported to the island via a zodiac boat.

Once on land we made our way up the single road leading inland. The Saint Magnus Church stood on the hill north of us and was our first destination. It is thought that this church was built on the sight of the original church where Earl Magnus took refuge in pray the night before his execution. It is a very unique style of cathedral for Orkney, which has been attributed to the belief that this was the site of an early Celtic monastery.


Moving on from the church we walked up the grassy road and made our way out to a large stone monument that sat out in a field. This was the site of Earl Magnus (whom later became Saint Magnus) met his end.

Earl Magnus was executed under the order of his cousin Earl Haakon after he had been double-crossed at a peace meeting he had arranged. Magnus suggested he be banished to Rome or The Holy Land, Haakon said no thanks, then Magnus agreed to be imprisoned and Haakon replied with “No way Jose”. Next Magnus suggested he be maimed or blinded and to this Haakon agreed. But Haakon’s soldiers had had enough of dealing with two lords trying to rule and said they were going to kill one of them and it didn’t matter which it was to them. Haakon is quoted as saying “I like Earldom better than death, so kill him”. The problem now was no one wanted to do it, finally Magnus ordered Haakon’s cook, Lifolf to use his axe on his head, it took two tries.

After a lazy relaxing time at the site of a double axe wound to the head execution we headed back to the pier and finally back aboard the Selkie. Returning to Kirkwall Marina after a lovely day of sailing. 

j.frede - Orkney Islands, Scotland - The Clipperton Project

j.frede : Live At Trans Pecos

Drawn At Sea

I have been invited to sail the Northern Isles of Scotland as an Artist in Residence aboard the ship Selkie as part of The Clipperton Project. While aboard the ship I will be making drawings using the motion of the sea with a simple Drawing Machine I have designed. Inspired and influenced by the Harmonograph Drawing Machines of the 1800’s, I am making a tray that will move at will contained inside a larger box. As the ship heels and bobs the tray and paper will move side to side, back and forth recording the sea’s movement as a drawing. Each drawing will last for 24 hours at which time I will change out the paper and a new drawing will begin. In the end there will be a log of the ships motion for everyday I am aboard. 

Along with the Drawing Machine I will also be keeping a daily journal, taking photographs and making videos of the expedition. These journals and images as well as photographs of the drawings made will be published as regularly as possible to my blog on The Huffington Post. Allowing all of my friends, family and everyone who finds romance in the open sea to follow along on the journey. 

I have launched a Kickstarter to help raise the funds to complete the proper version of the Drawing Machine and with the other expenses that occur on such a voyage.

j.frede : Live at Trans Pecos - 6.26.14


I will be playing my first live set in many moons next week at Trans Pecos in Queens, NY. I will be processing a field recording made inside the lens housing of the Piedras Blancas Lighthouse of the lens’ original clockwork in motion.

Trans Pecos
915 Wyckoff St. (Halsey L Train Stop)
8pm - $7

Thursday, June 26 2014

Sick Feeling
Anxiety death rock outta NYC

twee rock from SF

Certain Creatures
Brooklyn based experimental techno

On a Clear Day 
Ambient cut-up modular electronics

J. Frede 
Los Angeles conceptual sound artist

event invite:

Joy Syringe : A Group Show - 321 Gallery, NYC

June 28 – August 2, 2014 | Opening Reception: June 28th 

321 Gallery - 321 Washington Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11205

Rheims Alkadhi 
Nancy Barton
Sofi Brazzeal
Taro Masushio
Antje Rieck

Curated by Joseph Imhauser.

Joy Syringe is a Pollination show of the London Biennale.

For the Joy Syringe exhibition I will be presenting my “After Malevich” works consisting of the finished photograph printed and mounted to the exact dimensions of the original Black Square painting as well as the complete Action video of its creation. 

More information about the work I am showing can be found here:….

Event Invite:

THE HOT 100 Benefit Auction - the Leonardo Dicaprio Foundation

THE HOT 100 features 100 top, international, emerging artists with artworks priced under $10,000. Proceeds from THE HOT 100 auction will go to environmental and humanitarian charities supported by the Leonardo Dicaprio Foundation, aimed at raising awareness for climate change and environmental issues, dedicated to protecting Earth’s last wild places and fostering a harmonious relationship between humanity and the natural world.

j.frede : Fiction Landscape no.06 - 2013

My work available for purchase in the auction is Fiction Landscape no.06

more about this series here: 
The Fiction Landscapes are a continuation in my interest in memories, both secure and lost within objects, which I first addressed with my Heirlooms body of work in 2012. The Fiction Landscapes are made with banal photographs of landscapes I purchase at flea markets then arranging them into new landscapes by aligning in such a way that the scene continues from photo to photo spanning wide geographic locations and decades. I feel that with a photograph that is lacking a focal point such as a family member or specific location IE: the destination of the trip, then the photo is something of a placeholder for what was happening in the photographers life at that moment. For instance that point and shoot photo of a hill side on a road trip, which we have all taken at some point, will call back the trip as a whole and memories of the trip or that time in your life that are completely unassociated with the uninteresting and un related hillside that happened to fly past you as you rode in the car or stopped at a rest stop. Once these photos with no discernable direction have found themselves in a bin at the flea market these ambiguous photographs and their secret associations with memories are lost forever. Arranging these into new landscapes that never existed speaks to the stitching together of human behavior and how we relate to time and the past: How many people have stopped at that rest stop and taken nearly the same photo of the plain hillside? All locking their own associations into the view, first road trip with a new love; last road trip to see grandma; one of many road trips alone.

Booming Dunes : a study in thirty five parts

Booming Dunes : a study in thirty five parts

j.frede : Kelso Dunes - March 28 2014 - no.01 from j.frede on Vimeo.

more on this project can be seen here :

Reductions and Portraits

An essay on my Reductions series is up on the Huffington Post. 

"Time is both incredibly reliable and very predictable. Our sense of its measure depends on what we happen to be aligning on either end. Byproducts of our sense of time are eternity and the temporary, both, like the idea of time itself, are just ways for us to try and understand what is happening around us.

A mountain range feels eternal, but in reality has not been around long in the sense of the earth’s creation and likely will not be here at some point as the earth continues to churn, shift and fold like a grandmother wringing her hands in habit. The super continent Pangaea certainly would have felt like a landmass so great and impenetrable that its time was endless, but in reality even Pangaea was temporary and faced mortality through its breaking up. These life cycles or time frames of existence run harmoniously side-by-side: from insects that only live a few days, to humans, to the mountain ranges in a continuation, either in form or formlessness depending on their fate.

The Reductions series comes out of my interest in the end, represented in this case by the discarding of utilitarian objects that at some point were cherished or at least appreciated for their abilities while used daily. Their demise or changing of hands is a mystery in most instances, as many seem fully functional albeit visually worn. We can’t know if they were replaced by a newer version of themselves, smaller, bigger, or if their owners had merely eliminated a need the pieces had previously addressed.

read the complete essay at: