Present (13): including SA, DB, CC, EF, JG, AK, TK, TM, JA, MOC, CB, AD
Apologies (7): ADa, KG, CG, NH, SJN, FS, JW
Cécile Chevalier took the group to a new installation she has been working on, in collaboration with Andrew Duff, which was installed in an office at the University of Sussex. The work comprises of hundreds of strands of copper wire hanging from a mesh supported on a metal frame. The scale of the piece is such that participants can walk through it. As wires are touched and handled, sounds are generated via a mechanism linking to coded Max/MSP circuits on a connected laptop.
Initially participants played with the piece and were encouraged to record their responses to the experience before discussing the work. Caroline Bassett asked questions about the relationship between the installation here and Cécile’s stated interest in reminiscence and memory. The potential timescales being engaged with were considered: ‘short circuits’ and feedback loops appear to be important and Aysenur Karabulut pointed out that the inner workings had been made available reminding us of a time when technology was more ‘transparent’. This relates to old modernist principles such as ‘truth to materials’ which is not surprising since, as Cécile reminded us, she had once completed a degree in Crafts & 3D Design.
Linkages were made with other work by artists, Susan Hiller’s Witness for example, the relationship with hair was pointed to and the fact that the copper would most-likely transform or oxidize with time was pondered upon. The conversation also focused upon the acoustic dimension. Justin Grize pointed out that even without the digital aspects, sound emanated from the wires themselves. Andrew and Cécile explained that they had initially recorded the sounds from the actual copper strands as they dangled and touched each other but decided to opt for other effects. Lastly the potential difference between experiencing the work alone or in a group, was given attention.
The significance of having created the piece in a functioning office was also a discussion point. Afterwards during preparations for the Found in Translation Symposium in May it was suggested that the structure could be relocated to the Creativity Zone for that event as a means of investigating its impact in different situations.