Torgeir Husevaag / home / language-based projects / concerning the weight of words


Concerning the weight of words (1998)

Gallery 21-25, October 1998


22 Acrylic paintings on paper, One pen-drawing, Blackboards with texts and collages.


Summary of texts presented in the exhibition:


The nerves used in handwriting are closely connected to emotional centres in the brain. A writer builds a subconscious emotional relationship to each word according to how they feel to write. When a word feels wrong, the writer will not only dislike the word itself, but also build a negative relationship to what it represents.

A word where shape and content corresponds however, is heavy. It is harmonious and feels good to write.

In graphology (the science of handwriting-analysis), writing is divided into 3 zones: over, middle and underzone. A person will express different aspects of his personality through the way he shapes the each letter in each zone.




I have examined words referring to directions: up (opp), down (ned), over and under, and counted how many letters that were situated in the area the word referred to, and subtracted the number of letters that stretched into the opposite zone (ignoring the middle-zone). From this each word got a number, the weight of the word.

The examples where words are weighted against each other show how these emotions becomes subliminal parts of decision-making.


The project both points out the problem, and suggests a solution: Words with negative weight-index should be eliminated from the language and replaced with harmonious substitutes. The exception is words that people should have a negative relationship to, but the question of which they are might be the cause for some controversy, so there will be a need for an impartial language-committee to work on this.