Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Playing the Building

"Buildings make noises: radiators, pipes, creaks and rattles. I sensed that this could be a little more organized and maybe even musical." -David Byrne as quoted in the Wall St Journal.

In a collaboration with Creative Time, David has devised a musical installation in the Battery Maritime Building, which is next to the Staten Island Ferry. For anyone who lives in NYC, the above quote describes everyday life. This past weekend I stopped by the exhibit to experience the music a building can create. The small organ that sits to the front of the room is connected with wires to different parts of the building: pipes, radiators, columns. Hitting an organ key can initiate a response from a hammer-like object that thumps on the radiator- a sound I am all too familiar with. I enjoyed watching people create the sounds, which resonate differently depending on where you are in the room. This is a 9000 sq ft empty space, so the sky is almost the limit on where it can go. Taking in each section of the room, I felt a sort of calm and meditative state take over, not was I was expecting from the daily noises that bug me.

David has created a little oasis in NY, using the music that surrounds our everyday life.

10 South Street, New York, NY
31 May – 24 August 2008
Open Friday, Saturday, Sunday: Noon – 6PM (Free)

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