: symbol for medical prescription.

℞eForm: to make changes in something e.g. a person, a social, political or economic institution or practice in order to improve it.

℞eFormat: to give a new format to; revise or represent in another format; to change the way information is stored and organized, especially on a computer.


Items displayed on the platform include: compressed landscape pills made from earth/building debris/plant life collected at the ruined sites of two early 20th century utopian communes-Gaper: photograph of the artist with pill mounted on tongue ; photograph (by Paulien Oltheten) of participants in mud spa/ ‘rave’/sculptural installation titled Asocialen-Prophesy-Detox, Diepenheim, 2012; ergot samples in lightbox; entheogenic Salvia Divinorum plant derived from a strain collected in the Sierra Mazateca in Oaxaca, southern Mexico by American psychiatrist and ethno-botanist, Sterling Bunnell in 1962.

In the centre of the space stands a grotto/cave: uterine point of access to and expulsion from the underneath/the underworld. Unfinished, open-ended, it serves a variety of functions: theatrical prop/sacred shrine/primal shelter/printed paper shell/ portal to regression and epiphany/ miniature screening room. Three copper emoticon-gongs stand guard around the entrance in a circle.

The video screening on a loop inside the grotto is titled The Shepherdess – the Mazatec name for the psychoactive plant Salvia Divinorum (Sage of the Diviners) used by indigenous curanderas (shamans) in traditional velada (healing vigil) ceremonies. The video, made in collaboration with German artist, Vera Hofmann combines verité footage of Noorda’s vigil encounter with the Shepherdess during an overnight stay in the Hortis Botanicus at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam in April, 2015 with a virtual rendering of the experience in Second Life (“the largest ever 3D virtual world created entirely by its users” according to the official site secondlife.com). Noorda and Hoffman each designed and operated their own avatars and worked independently on their individual segments which were later combined at the editing stage. The journey narrated involves travel back and forth across species, through multiple time layers, unevenly realized digital landscapes, outer and inner space, from ocean bed to childhood swimming pool to (cardboard) kidney dish. For the Shepherdess, all scales are equal, all surfaces permeable, all material transmutable.

Because I can swim in the immense

Because I can swim in all forms


I am the shepherdess


Maria Sabína, Mazatec curandera channeling the spirit of the Salvia D. Goddess

℞EFORMAT: The visual art component of Noorda’s PhDArts dissertation Royal Academy of Art, University of Leiden, awarded December 9, 2015, The Hague, the Netherlands, November 27-December 14, 2015.


Photography by: G.J. van Rooij, R. Noorda