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Photo: Mona Haug

Knut Erik Jensen, born 8 October 1940 in Honningsvåg, Finnmark is a Norwegian film director, writer and photographer. After studying French, Russian and history, he attended the London Film School.  In 1978, he joined the staff of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) and has since then made documentaries and short films for NRK as well as independently, including four feature films. In 2008 Jensen was made a Knight, First Class of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav.


"As a photographer, editor, writer, director and producer for many years, my goal in all my films has always been to try to develop my own personal storytelling. I want it to be possible after about one minute to recognize that this must be a Knut Erik Jensen film. If not it might as well be a copy of something already seen. But of course not everything I create is unique or brilliant, absolutely not. But it is the desire, hope, and the creative impatience as I start each film, the need to stretch myself and become better, which force me to continue. Longing for today should summarize everything I have struggled through in my 45 years career. 


”Longing for today” will contain elements from many of my previous attempts to create my own film language. From one of my first documentaries, “Farewell, old Kjelvik Mountain” via the free imaginative films; “Svalbard in the world”, “Cold World”, “My World,” short films “Rosornas väg” and “Voice of Life” through the television series “Finnmark between East and West”, cinema documentaries “Cool & crazy,” “På hau i havet “and” The acute man “. But perhaps most through my four previous feature films; “Stella Polaris”, “Burnt by Frost”, “Passing Darkness” and “Icekiss”. 


I have always considered the image and the visual to be the foundation of every film. Everything else must exist under this rule, be subordinate and thereby enriching the total language of the film. The knowledge of how difficult it is to succeed has made me humble rather than arrogant. I know that every film I make is competing for attention in many arenas. The more personal a film (or any artwork, for that matter), the greater the chances are that it ́s unique. No one else has your personality. Your personality is your only niche.


If I’m able to express this, then perhaps I can get an eternal place in film history and my film can be timeless. This has happened with my movies on occasion. I hope this also will happen with Longing For Today."

24 frames per second / 24 single images


The pictures are a personal selection of 24 single stills, 1 second, from Knut Erik Jensen’s first movie, ‘Grete in a cemetery in Leningrad in 1970’. The entire film consists of about 7000 single images in double 8mm format. Each image should stand for itself, and together they make a mini map of the entire movie. The film itself was recorded with his first movie camera, a Soviet Quarz made for double 8mm film, purchased during his studies in Leningrad in 1969-1970. The film was recorded in the Smolensky cemetery not far from where he was living. The book ‘24 frames per second’ was published as part of the project and is dedicated to the memory of Grete Bernhard who plays the woman in the cemetery.


The exhibition 24 frames per second was originally initiated by Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum in Tromsø in 2010, and has been presented in numerous galleries and venues since then.

** Click on image to view its full size.

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