Shoreworld: Portraits Of Norwegian Folklore; 9th Infantry Division Invade Asbury


Ole Marius Jørgensen “The Way North”: Portraits Of Norwegian Folklore – May 1 – June 13 – Exhibit No. 9 Asbury Park.

The descriptive phrase “Norwegian Strain of Surrealism” caught my interest when reading about this next Shoreworld offering. Ole Marius Jørgensen is a fine art photographer based in Oslo. His bio states an intricate combination of humor and a Norwegian effort of whimsical finesse in his work and finds his core inspiration steeped in old folk tales and Nordic sagas. He likes to shoot in the sparsely populated and legendary areas of the great Northern regions. Many of his iconic images reflect the dreams and fears of his countrymen and raise questions of specific identities.

His imagery brings forth desolate landscapes filled with the trepidation of unseen behemoths and creatures heard in the Blizzard-veiled distance. Amongst the Norwegian landscape of mountain ridges, ancient forests and deep fjords once lived a cold, strange group of people. Their vast and glacial country is known as “The Way North.” Scanning the horizon, you shakily down your aquavit while looking for the way home. But it’s not that easy.

It is here that its indigenous people make their everyday pilgrimage for survival. The exertion of making a rough-hewn living mixes ominously with the legends of iconic and timeless lore. Unexplained mysteries rumble as they make their presence felt throughout the frigid region of hidden beauty and lethal surprise that have been whispered in taverns and in front of fireplaces for centuries.

It is behind those doors that natives fueled their conscience boundaries with the possible existence of a peculiar gathering of spirits and creatures. Both good and evil, subjects of unexplained incidents and tales tell of the unknown thing. This is the presentation of a group of mythical beasts that stealthily roam those ancient stomping grounds. Several well-known 19th century Norwegian artists have painted some form or conception of these spirits, but none ever captured them on film—until now.

Shot on the very same North Norwegian landscapes from which the legends took shape, Jørgensen and collaborator Mikkel Brand Bugge unveil an exquisitely bizarre and arabesque vision of these fabled mythological creatures with “The Way North.” Brought to you by Asbury’s Exhibit No.9, Jørgensen’s exhibition showcases haunting and voraciously detailed cinematic portraits of Norwegian folklore. The exhibit kicks off on May 1, and runs through June 13 of this year.

Jørgensen will host questions and general inquiries on May 1 at the gallery’s opening reception. The reception runs from 7-10 p.m. Jorgensen and his Norwegian surrealism looks to be a fascinating exploration of a captivating subject, and will attract both art lovers and seekers of hidden truths concerning the creatures that guide us into magical plateaus of discovery.

Exhibit No.9 of Asbury Park is a gallery and contemporary art studio where both artists and patrons can meet and connect with the art world. Gallery events include exhibitions, seminars and artist talks. 9 SURF EDITIONS, their in-house studio, produces museum quality archival digital printing for the gallery’s resident and exhibiting artists as well as the art and photography community at large. Located in Asbury Park, New Jersey, Exhibit No.9 inhabits the very heart of a magnetic renaissance, attracting people, culture and art forms from around the globe.

For continued forays into the mind of Ole Marius Jørgensen, head over to his site at and please join us on May 1 over at Exhibit No.9 on Cookman Avenue for what is sure to be the gathering of the month.

Exhibit No.9 resides at 550-102 Cookman Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ, and their ongoing event information is available at


9th Infantry Division – Traditional Rock And Roll Tacticians Invade The Stone Pony – May 2

            More and more I see American descendants of our country’s bravest heroes stepping up and paying homage. Past articles have included Williams Honor members Gordon Brown and Reagan Richards and their dedication to past family soldiers, as well as retired Army Sergeant Christine Martucci. These passionate artists continue the theme of our brethren’s patriotic sacrifice as they wave the flag of high-quality musical victory all along the East Coast and the world beyond.

            9th Infantry Division is yet another powerful addition that stands up for American glory. Kingpin Joe Birardi is a musician that moves like a shark, too restless to stand still; his passionate quest has resulted in keeping many irons in the musical fire. He has been featured in the Aquarian several times as both a contemporary songwriter and musical archivist of tradition-based rock. In a decaying country more concerned with twerking and what color underwear Justin Beiber is wearing, Birardi’s latest offering is a captivating nod to our glorious and triumphant.

            I happened to initiate a conversation with my great uncle about his part in World War II. An unassuming 90-year-old that likes gardening, sailboats and writing historical books, I never knew just what his real involvement was in the great war. The horrors he witnessed and experienced firsthand were astronomical. Through it all, he, like the thousands and thousands of fellow soldiers, was a staunch liberator and a beacon of salvation for people who were locked behind gates and walls of massive oppression. It’s hard to look at a frail old man and realize just what he undertook to keep us all free today. And this is the proud theme of 9th Infantry Division.

            Birardi’s father Sgt. Joseph Birardi was part of the 9th infantry division that saw rough action on the infamous Normandy Beach landing, as well as most of Europe. From start to finish, he fought through four campaigns in the short and torrid span of three years. He was deep in the thick during the famed Battle of Remagen and was among the concentration camp liberators in Dachau, Poland. Birardi was also extremely lucky. Out of the 11 Jamesburg, NJ residents that went to war, he was among only three that came back alive.

            Along with their respectful nod to our brave war vets, 9th Infantry Division is a band that believes in the merit of rock and roll’s early days. They concentrate on a time when performers focused on raw and organic music instead of worrying about social media likes or beard length. 9th Infantry Division models themselves on the titans who took to infamous stages and left fans drained from the glorious act of connected participation. They pay homage to the gritty past, tipping their hat to the revolutionary decades when the music was a true form of engaging lifestyle.

            Featuring a 10-piece ensemble, 9th Infantry Division is both visual and compositionally driven. Their fast-paced attack carries over from Birardi’s other group, EOS, and is sure to bring both old and new fans to the proverbial party. And while 9th Infantry Division is a fairly new project, the feeling of camaraderie and friendship are immediate lures for music fans of all types.

            The Stone Pony show takes off May 2 and will feature several opening acts. Along with 9th Infantry Division, opening acts such as Amanda Morris, On The Rocks, and Rockin Robin & Boom will partake.

            Tickets are available in advance through any band member for $10, and $15 at the door. May 2 is an all-ages show. Doors are at 7:30 and 9th Infantry Division has synchronized all watches to hit the stage at 10 p.m.

            For more information, visit the band at and view the Stone Pony schedule at