Oliver Beer / Rubén D hers / Nicolas Field / Julian Sartorius / Michael Schmid / Konrad Smoleński / Rutger Zuydervelt

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1 Group exhibition Orkest! Oliver Beer / Rubén D hers / Nicolas Field / Julian Sartorius / Michael Schmid / Konrad Smoleński / Rutger Zuydervelt SU FR Opening SA :00 An exhibition on sound with a focus on interplay and interaction, that sounds like a stretched ensemble. Orkest! is a score for ensemble that relies heavily on the architecture of the gallery space and the visitor s exploring. The visitor feels the dynamics and contrasts as he/she explores the exhibition, making his/her own score. The works are well chosen to fit in the specific rooms as well to interact with the other works in the adjacent spaces so they reinforce each other in the in-between spaces. Rutger Zuydervelt Stay Tuned Stay Tuned invites the visitor to take a walk through the orchestra. Stay Tuned is a sound installation where each speaker plays a continuous loop of a group of instruments playing an A note, as if they were tuning up. Visitors walk freely in this environment, literally walking through the orchestra; each step they take changes the mix of what they hear.

2 Konrad Smoleński Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More is a sculptural instrument that reproduces, at regular intervals, a music piece written for bronze bells, wide range loudspeakers, and other resonating objects. The composition is based on a contrast between the symbolically rich sound of the bells and the abstract resounding noise. By using a delay effect, Smoleński offers an insight into a world where history has come to a standstill, thereby approaching the radical propositions of contemporary physics with its perception of the passage of time as an illusion. Julian Sartorius Schläft ein Lied in allen Dingen An installation version for three screens and six loudspeakers of Sartorius Beat Diary project, where he made one beat every day for a whole year. These 365 compositions and 365 photos where pressed on 12 LPs alongside a book with 365 photos, and where available as a limited box, 365 pieces. The title refers to the poem Wünschelrute byn Joseph Freiherr von Eichendorff. Schläft ein Lied in allen Dingen die da träumen fort und fort, und die Welt hebt an zu singen, triffst du nur das Zauberwort

3 Oliver Beer Mum s Continuous Note The video Mum s Continuous Note presents a moment of intimacy with the artist s mother. Eulogy on the beauty of sound and harmony, and the emotions which they can provoke, for 3 minutes she sings a continuous note without seeming to stop to catch her breath. Through the subtitles which appear beneath her image, the singer explains not without humour her apparent virtuosity, her method of circular breathing, and emotive potential of the harmonies which she creates with the aid of a miniature blue guitar. Rubén D hers Chords Tunnel #1 Chords Tunnel #1 is an installation that uses a variable number of prepared acoustic guitars and small dc motors to generate a sound tunnel. The visitor perceives a sonic landscape whose overlapping tones shift gently from one chord to the next according to his/her movement throughout the space.

4 Michael Schmid Installation for bass flutet (working title) In the room hangs a bass flute only played by feedback. Nicolas Field Shimmering Beast Shimmering Beast consists of a 5 by 6 meters large triangle, formed by sixty brilliant cymbals, cymbal stands, bass transducers and lights. This massive and visually stunning collection of cymbals slightly touch each other - through the vibrating floor producing a shimmering sound.

5 Institut suisse de Rome, Italie, juillet 2011 Michael Schmid & Nicolas Field Missa Cuiusvis Toni (working title) Missa Cuiusvis Toni is a four-part musical setting of the Ordinary of the Mass by the 15th-century composer Johannes Ockeghem. The work's name reflects the fact that it may be sung in any of the Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian or Mixolydian modes. This is made possible by writing the music without clefs or key signatures, allowing the singers to assume those suited to the chosen mode. The sound installation by Michael Schmid and Nicolas Field plays the four modes simultaneously in one room. The result is a contemporary piece of atonal music that reveals the hidden spaces between the four modes. Openingsevent Orkest! SA :00 The exhibition will see the entire Netwerk building played as an instrument. The scope of the opening night extends even further, with the entire city of Aalst as the stage. The exhibition will be officially opened from the roof of Netwerk, with a concert for 23 foghorns by Heleen Van Haegenborgh, and the installation by Konrad Smoleński will be accompanied by a live drum solo by Julian Sartorius, which will in turn become a part of the installation.

6 Heleen Van Haegenborgh on foghorns Signaux Pianist and composer Heleen Van Haegenborgh chose foghorns to accompany the piano pieces on her début CD Signaux. She discovered Raoul de La Roch Aymon on YouTube, a Frenchman who collects ship horns. From his collection of more than 300 horns, she selected 23, which when combined span a range of two octaves. She then had the Frenchman construct a piano that could be used to operate the horns. The resulting foghorn organ can be heard for kilometres, there of course being no volume adjuster. Compressed air is pumped through each horn in the array when its corresponding key is pressed. The operation of the keyboard is a binary process. This means it s all or nothing; each horn blows or remains silent, with no middle ground in between. The horns assume their characteristic tones as their sound travels through the open space, in this case that of the city of Aalst. Julian Sartorius drum solo The installation Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More by Konrad Smoleński (Polish Pavilion Venice Biennale 2013) makes use of the sounds of all the works in the Orkest! exhibition and incorporates them into a unique orchestral performance. On the evening of the opening, percussionist Julian Sartorius will play a drum solo as part of Smoleński s work. This solo will in turn be recorded to be used as an additional audio source for the installation. The drum itself will also become a part of the work in addition to the bells and speakers adding another resonating object to the daily performance. Raoul de La Roche Aymon

7 Extra info Oliver Beer The video Mum s Continuous Note (2013) presents a moment of intimacy with the artist s mother. Eulogy on the beauty of sound and harmony, and the emotions which they can provoke, for 3 minutes she sings a continuous note without seeming to stop to catch her breath. Through the subtitles which appear beneath her image, the singer explains not without humour her apparent virtuosity, her method of circular breathing, and emotive potential of the harmonies which she creates with the aid of a miniature blue guitar. https://vimeo.com/ b r a nd ne w, october 2014 by christine macel Christine Macel: Over the last two years you have had many shows and performances among others, at MAC Lyon; MoMA PS1, New York; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Fon- dation Hermès, Tokyo; Centre Pompidou, Paris; and Galerie Thaddeus Ropac, Paris. You were trained as a composer, studied art at Oxford and began to exhibit in You work with space and sound, using frequencies in relationship to architecture in order to create immersive works. Oliver Beer: Often, yes, I use the natural frequen- cies of architectural spaces. Every space has got its own notes, just like a wine glass or an organ pipe has got its own note. In the series The Resonance Project (2007 ongoing) I work with the fact that every space has its own inherent harmonies, and though a simple process I can work with singers to stimulate an architectural space to resonate in exactly the same way that a wine glass resonates. It is a very simple and very beautiful process the moment where the body enters into unison with the room and the resonance of the room entirely eclipses the voice. But this is only just the starting point: the real question is where do we take it, what kind of music is going to be born out of this unique situation? In the piece I am making right now at the Pompidou, certain notes are present and have been quietly resonating ever since it first opened in I m working on the project with Les Cris de Paris, one of the top choral ensembles in France. Now for the first time musicians are revealing the inherent harmonies of the architecture. CM: You positioned singers along the transparent top- floor tunnel of the Centre Pompidou, and one can move around and between them to hear the piece. The possibility of the resonance was already there, but what you do is to re- veal the potential of the space. You make audible something that was there already but not perceptible. OB: The title of my last piece, Diabolus in Musica (2014), comes from the Latin the Devil in music, a historical term given to any two notes creating the inter- val of a diminished fifth. For centuries religious leaders banned the use of this interval because the dissonance was said to evoke the Devil. Here we have two notes that are

8 completely abstract [he sings] and for centuries they were forbidden to composers. This piece is included in my show at Thaddaeus Ropac where I built a structure, as I have done for Aural Architecture (2013) at Villa Ar- son and for Rabbit Hole (2014) at MAC Lyon. You can enter it and whisper the right notes and the space will resonate and sing this interval back to you. It s strange that a physical space can contain harmonies, and that this abstract sound can be charged with such subjective and superstitious meaning. Colt Waku 1847 (Offside) (2014). Courtesy of the Artist and Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris CM: You work a lot with perception and emotions, also in reference to specific people. For example, you did this piece, Oma s Kitchen Floor (2008), which consists of the stripped kitchen linoleum floor from your grandmother s house. Over the last four decades your Oma made several footmarks, and I think it s a very empathic and emotional work. This is something I feel in many of your pieces. Al- though the meaning is not always clear, what really comes to the viewer is this emotional content. OB: After my grandmother died I came to see the linoleum floor of her kitchen like a drawing that she made with her feet, tracing half of her life. And the formal abstraction of the object remained important for me. Like the sculpture A Road to Nowhere (2013) named in reference to a Talking Heads song from my birth year where the top surface of two train rails taken from the SNCF between Lyon and Marseille are polished to reveal the patina of all these millions of journeys; but ultimately they re just two minimal steel lines leading into the distance. CM: Do you imprint a human presence in your work? Why does your work offer this strong experience? This is not a dry conceptual understanding of music. It s on the one hand written and prepared but on the other very emotional. That s why to me it has such a big response in such short time. OB: I remember as a teenager playing Shostakov- ich s fifth in an orchestra. In 1937 he was dangerously out of favor with Stalin, and he had to write a symphony to the glory of the Soviet state and in doing so rehabili- tate himself politically. He did this and yet somehow he managed to code his political dissent into the music. He had an emotional half-hour standing ovation from the public! This abstract music,

9 in an abstract form, had two simultaneous meanings: one appropriate for the Soviet regime and the other able to evoke the com- munal pain of the people. CM: This is very specific to you because, I think, you have this deep knowledge of music. When I saw you working with the singers, I understood that you are also a director, a conductor. It is also very specific to your practice. To me, contrary to what I read, I don t think it has a relationship with relational aesthetics. You are indeed an artist as a producer and a director, but also a composer. OB: Being a composer is an extraordinary position because not only you create the music, you can also choose to what extent you direct it. You collaborate with performers: it s about collective expression. For example I suppose my film Reanimation 1 (2013) that I made with Villa Arson in Nice is like a composition. Five hundred children followed a protocol to turn a sequence from Walt Disney s Snow White into a flicker- ing and psychedelic new film. The child becomes the musician, interpreting the score. Diablus in Musica, installation view at Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris (2014). Courtesy of the Artist and Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris

10 CM: You also make objects, like This is a Pipe (2013), a tobacco pipe cut and immersed in a wall, and also guns, like British Bulldog (2014). You did a piece in crystal and gold entitled Silence is Golden and a window piece, Outside-In (both 2013). OB: At Oxford I was a student adviser for the team of architects designing the new school. They cut through a 3-D model on a screen, and I was entranced: it was like an instant Matta-Clark. The pipe was used for decades, and thousands of liters of air and smoke passed through it and yet until now it never revealed its true anatomy. With the Fondation Hermès I made the series Outside-In, windowpanes physically morphed to enter the room and become functioning ear trum- pets. They manipulate the frontier between inside and outside. CM: Like in many of your works, I see a deep interac- tion with the materiality of the world, the body and the environment. OB: To misquote Shakespeare s King John: strong reasons make strong interactions. Rubén D hers Ruben D Hers (Caracas, Venezuela 1980), musician and sound artist currently living in Germany. By 2001 he finished studies on Fine Arts with a mayor in Painting at the Cristobal Rojas Visuals Arts School in Venezuela. Since 2009 he began to study electroacoustic composition and sound Design under Robin Minard at the Bauhaus University Weimar in Germany. His learning in music has been self-taught. In Caracas, from 1999 to 2007 he was co-founder and guitarist of the experimental rock band kré. Since then he works on his solo project which highlights the use of the guitar as a main tool of experimentation. His work focuses on sound installations, compositions and improvised music. He has exhibited his work at venues like ZKM in Karlsruhe, Neues Museum Weimar, Pure Data Convetion Weimar-Berlin, SeaM Weimar Studio fu r elek-troakustische Musik, Kein Akt - 48 Std Kölln Neu in Berlin, Weart Festival in Barcelona, Spain and at the Nelson Garrido Organization in Caracas, Venezuela. In 2013 he won the Lab 30 Award n Augsburg, Germany. chords tunnel #1 sound installation, 36 acoustic guitars, 72 motors, cable, fabric and computer, 2013 Chords Tunnel #1 is an installation that uses a variable number of prepared acoustic guitars (contingent on the size of the space) and small dc motors to generate a sound tunnel. The visitor perceives a sonic landscape whose overlapping tones shift gently from one chord to the next according to his/her movment through the space. The tunnel consists of multiple guitars, roughly one to two meters apart from one another, mounted on two parallel walls. (see 1. sketch). Each guitar is played continuously by one or two small dc motors with fabric attached to them. The motors are suspended from the ceiling and trace the length of the necks of each guitar resting

11 gently against their strings. As the motors spin, the sustained friction between the fabric and metal strings generates an unpredictable cloud made of chords and overtones that evolves and resonates within the space. Some motors swing in a pendulum-like motion across the neck of the guitars and, as they rotate at a variable speed, they produce a sort of polyrhythmic gesture amidst the mass of chords. The motors are more or less fixed so that they generate a stabile chord surface which reveals an overtone structure with a nebulous form. The chord tunnel would produce a nuanced drone that can ensconces its visitors in sound. The delicate changes and contrasts that are perceived at a spatial and harmonic level, depend on how the visitor chooses to engage with the space. Ultimately, the installation aims to inquire into our sense of space and melody and to challenge our conventional sense of time as measure. In turn, Chord Tunnel draws attention to our sense of time experienced through music. sketch for installation showing the distribuition of chords in corridor like space Chord Tunnel #1 works as a continuation or extention of a previous work in which I have explored the guitar as a sound source for a space based on chords. The installation, entitled Playa, was a piece for fourteen guitars that functioned like an autonomous sound sculpture inside a museum space. The dynamics of Playa were controlled by a program, which was built to produce small articulated movements (speed changes) of the motors. Unlike that piece, the compositional approach for Chord Tunnel would rely heavily on the architecture of the space. Rather than being everything programmed in advance, the visitor would feel the dynamics and contrasts as he/she explores the tunnel. Melody is spatially located, since it depends on where you are sitting or whether you are stationary or moving. As your head moves, your ears behave like fingers on a string instrument activating the various nodes that emphasize

12 different partials of the harmonics spectrum. In fact, the entire space in which the music is housed gives evidence of the physical properties of sound so that many acoustical phenomena can actually be identified

13 Nicolas Field Né à Londres en 1975, Nicolas Field arrive en Suisse à 6 ans et grandit entre Bâle et Genève. Il débute la batterie à 12 ans et découvre au fil des années le vaste potentiel de l instrument. A 20 ans, il décide de s installer aux Pays-Bas pour suivre des cours de percussion au Conservatoire d Amsterdam ( ) et de sonologie au Conservatoire de La Haye ( ). Il suit notamment l enseignement de Joël Ryan et expérimente durant ces années de multiples techniques musicales, dans une volonté permanente de créer une nouvelle matière sonore à partir de la batterie. Dès le début des années 2000, il commence à sillonner l Europe en tant que batteur avec différentes formations (musique contemporaine, musique improvisée, jazz). Au fil des rencontres et des tournées qui le mènent notamment aux Etats-Unis, au Japon, en Corée et en Australie, Nicolas Field collabore avec des artistes de renommée internationale tels Otomo Yoshihide (guitare), Anders Hana (guitare), Keiji Haino (guitare/chant), Seijiro Murayama (batterie), Damo Suzuki (ex CAN), Anthony Pateras (Piano), John Hegre (guitare), Tetuzi Akiyama (guitare) ou encore le Rova Saxophone 4tet. Actuellement, ses projets musicaux phares sont «Buttercup Metal Polish» (duo de percussion avec Alexandre Babel), «Cask Strength» (projet musical avec l électronicien américain Jeff Carey), un duo avec le saxophoniste américain Keir Neuringer, un duo avec le saxophoniste japonais Akira Sakata et une collaboration avec le groupe néerlandais «Cactus Truck». Progressivement, le goût de Nicolas Field pour l électronique le mène à travailler également sur des solos de batterie comprenant des capteurs de mouvements et de l électronique live. Dès 2010, il se produit seul sur scène, avec un vaste dispositif électronique et compose ses premières pièces pour batterie. Il joue notamment au Swiss-Australian Jolt Festival de Bâle, au festival Batterie Genève et au Festival Météo.

14 Parallèlement, dès 2008, Nicolas Field crée ses premières œuvres plastiques sous la forme d installations sonores : «Gate 8» pour le Mapping festival avec Dimitri Delcourt et «Think Thrice» pour l exposition Dark Designs à la Maison d Ailleurs d Yverdon. En 2009, sur invitation du metteur en scène belge Jan Lauwers et de la NeedCompany, il présente durant un mois «Think Thrice» à Roubaix et à Bruxelles dans le cadre de l exposition «The Tragedy of the Applause». Durant sa résidence à l Institut suisse de Rome ( ), Nicolas Field crée Shimmering Beast, une impressionnante installation sonore composée de 60 cymbales qui sera notamment exposée à Rome, Forli et Vienne. Au cours de sa résidence à AirAntwerpen (2011), Nicolas Field présente l installation sonore et visuelle North Of Black Atlantic Currents, œuvre aux multiples ramifications, véritable structure dans la structure. En 2012, il développe un projet d installation et de performance avec le plasticien Fritz Welch à la galerie «Corpo 6» à Berlin. Finalement, Nicolas Field travaille depuis 2006, pour des spectacles de danse et de théâtre. En 2006, il crée la musique pour le spectacle «Disco Pigs» d Enda Walsh présenté dans le cadre du festival de la Bâtie. Il collabore depuis 2011 avec la compagne de danse 7273 et s est produit au festival Antigel 2011 avec les danseurs Filipo Armati, Mohamed Toukabri et Marthe Krummenacher. En 2012, il compose la musique de l installation «In Limbo» de l artiste genevois Nicolas Robel. La même année, il est choisi pour composer la musique de la pièce Caligula, mise en scène par Jan Lauwers au Burgtheater de Vienne. Shimmering Beast a également été utilisée comme élément de scénographie et occupe une place prépondérante dans la pièce. Shimmering Beast Installation sonore et visuelle, 2011 «Shimmering Beast» a été créee à Rome en 2011 par Nicolas Field, lors de sa résidence à l Institut suisse de Rome. Cette impressionnante installation sonore et visuelle est composée de 60 cymbales qui sont reliées entre elles et sont accrochées à la verticale sur des pieds de cymbales. Les cymbales sont placées de telle manière qu elles se touchent légèrement les unes, les autres, créant ainsi un réseau d interdépendances. Ainsi, lorsque l une des cymbales bouge, elle entraine dans son sillage et sa résonnance toutes les autres. Le projet dans son entier constitue un triangle de 5.50 mètres sur 6 mètres. L impressionnante installation sonore et visuelle Shimmering Beast a été créee à Rome en Elle est composée de 60 cymbales qui sont accrochées à la verticale sur des pieds de cymbales. Les cymbales sont placées de telle manière qu elles se touchent légèrement les unes, les autres, créant ainsi un réseau d interdépendances. De cette manière, lorsque l une des cymbales bouge, elle entraine toutes les autres dans son mouvement et sa résonnance. Le projet dans son entier constitue un mur de 5.50 mètres sur 6 mètres. Sous le podium (sur lequel sont posés les pieds de cymbales) sont fixés quatre vibreurs qui amplifient les fréquences basses générées par l ordinateur, font trembler le plancher sur lequel reposent les pieds de cymbales et accentuent le frémissement (à la manière d un mini tremblement de terre). Sous

15 l action des vibreurs, les cymbales se mettent ainsi à trembler, sonner et résonner. Eclairée par des spots, la construction forme une sorte de paroi dorée, chatoyante et réfléchissante. Les pieds de cymbales font quant à eux office d armature. La réflexion de la lumière qui est projetée sur les cymbals en mouvement, depuis la face, est influencée par le déplacement des cymbales et scintille à la manière d une boule à facettes, du soleil sur l eau ou d un miroir que l on déplacerait. «En collaboration avec l artiste sonore Nicolas Field, Jan Lauwers a distillé à partir du Caligula d Albert Camus une véritable fête pour les sens. Un arrièreplan acoustique de qualité accompagne l action. Une installation sonore, des cymbales dorées, confère à la mise en scène une tension, une dramatique particulière, aux bons moments.» Wiener Zeitung - Mai 2012 Le podium sur lequel repose l installation joue un rôle central : quatre vibreurs sont en effet fixés sous cette structure. Ils amplifient les fréquences basses générées par l ordinateur relié à l installation et font trembler le plancher à la manière d un mini tremblement de terre. Sous l action des vibreurs, les cymbales se mettent donc à trembler, sonner et résonner.

16 Eclairée par des spots, la construction forme une paroi dorée, chatoyante et réfléchissante. Les pieds de cymbales font quant à eux office d armature. La réflexion de la lumière qui est projetée sur les cymbales en mouvement, depuis la face, est influencée par le déplacement des cymbales et scintille à la manière d une boule à facettes, du soleil sur l eau ou d un miroir que l on déplacerait. Expositions Institut suisse de Rome, Italie, juillet 2011 Festival Crisalide, Oratoire San Sebastiano, Forli, Italie, 1-4 septembre 2011 Burgtheater de Vienne, Autriche. Element scénographique dans la pièce de Caligula, mis en scène par Jan Lauwers, NeedCompany, mai mars 2013

17 Institut suisse de Rome, Italie, juillet 2011 Institut suisse de Rome, Italie, juillet 2011

18 Julian Sartorius Julian Sartorius, born 30 april 1981 in Thun (CH) The beat is the defining element in the life of Julian Sartorius. Born 1981 in Thun (Switzerland), he began his first drum lessons at the age of five and followed his passion via marches, Michael Jackson and as a member of local underground bands. With his rhythms, which push the boundaries of New Music, Hip-Hop and World Music, Sartorius reveals the endless possibilities and range of his instrument. He often prepares his drums, works with unusual, unprocessed acoustic sounds and develops, beat by beat, an unheard environment of sound. Julian Sartorius was taught by musicians such as Fabian Kuratli, Pierre Favre and Norbert Pfammatter at the Jazz Schools in Bern and Lucerne. He has collaborated with Sophie Hunger, Colin Vallon, Dimlite, Merz, Jürg Halter and Rhys Chatham, and has toured throughout Europe, South America, Canada and the US. Besides that he s playing solo concerts all over Europe. Konrad Smoleński Il Palazzo Biennale Arte - La Biennale di Venezia Venice IT, Polish Pavilion Venice Biennale 2013 Everything Was Forever, Until it Was No More audio installation, 2013 Everything Was Forever, Until it Was No More (video here) is a sculptural instrument that reproduces, at regular intervals, a music piece written for bronze bells, wide range loudspeakers, and other resonating objects."

19 Everything Was Forever, Until it Was No More is a sculptural instrument that reproduces, at regular intervals, a music piece written for bronze bells, wide range loudspeakers, and other resonating objects. The composition is based on a contrast between the symbolically rich sound of the bells and the abstract resounding noise. By using a delay effect, Smoleński offers an insight into a world where history has come to a standstill, thereby approaching the radical propositions of contemporary physics with its perception of the passage of time as an illusion. The Polish Pavilion at the 55th International Art Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia Venice 1 June 24 November 2013 Polish Pavilion Commissioner: Hanna Wróblewska Exhibition Curators: Daniel Muzyczuk and Agnieszka Pindera Assistant Commissioner: Joanna Waśko Concept The two hand-made bronze bells which form the core of Konrad Smoleński s installation successfully convey a somewhat crude and primitive character of a work that alludes to the traditional craft of bell-founding. The bells located in the central part of the space, along with the rows of broadband speakers echoing them and the two opposing walls of metal cases (in the Polish Pavilion) and wooden platform (in CentrePasquArt), serve as an example of a model stereophonic system. Although the form of the individual constituents seems familiar, the interaction between them in this relatively small space is quite startling. What seems especially out of place in this arrangement is the idiophones which are normally placed well above the line of vision. Moreover, the purpose of the enormous wooden platform or two hundred small metal doors are open to interpretation their size and appearance are quite universal and may be associated with a number of different public spaces and the respective functions that correspond to them. Each of the constituents of this visual and aural arrangement plays an equal part. In Smoleński s composition the sound of a traditional instrument is first recorded in real time and then processed, delayed and retransmitted. This is alternated with a monotonous drone from the enormous speakers, and finally the sound reverberates through the metal or wooden structures which are integrated with the architecture of the space. Previously shown in Venice, the sound sculpture is based primarily on the manipulation of the tolling of a bell an ancient instrument which has for centuries set the rhythm of our earthly and eternal lives. While transforming this familiar sound, Smoleński changes its meaning: a sound that evokes a variety of associations is now given an abstract frequency which seems devoid of connotations. Not only does the artist free the signal from its source, but he also resorts to the use of delay and reverberation. The accumulation of acoustic waves provides the broadcast sound with a weight which has a direct impact on all the subjects and objects around the installation. It appears that the acoustic signal can move the molecules of both animate and inanimate objects with an equal force. The installation is a continuation of more than a decade of explorations carried out by a visual artist with a keen interest in sound. Smoleński s works combine punk rock aesthetics with the precision and elegance typical of minimalism. The artist uses both

20 traditional and self-constructed sound objects to examine the flow of energy and its interaction with the audience. By exploring the possibilities of electricity, sound waves and PA systems, the artist manipulates the meanings we usually attribute to objects which are typically used in rock culture. These artistic endeavors and the way Smoleński uses his instruments in Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More bring to mind the illusory nature of time, as proclaimed by Julian Barbour. This British theoretical physicist undermines the significance of time while conjuring up his vision of a timeless universe, where one of the key categories is the present perceived as a three-dimensional snapshot, and where the chronological ordering of events is a result of nothing more than our memory of individual Nows. Therefore, time, according to Barbour, is but a sensation of temporality, enhanced by what he calls time capsules, or records of what we believe to have existed in the past. Aside from Barbour s hypotheses, our analysis of the artist s experiments, including those with the sound of a traditional instrument, is based on a number of other scientific and literary theories, all expressing the inaccuracy or exhaustion of the idea of time. These include science-fiction stories, dissertations on experiments with sound and aural illusions, and studies on such museum concepts as the Encyclopedic Palace (title of the 55th International Art Exhibition in Venice). An echo of the installation used as a tool for accumulating energy can also be found in The Voices of Time by J. G. Ballard which offers an entropic vision of the last man on Earth collecting so-called terminal documents. The aforementioned compositional tools used by Smoleński are also typical for Samuel Beckett for whom the notion of time is one of the key issues, both in terms of text and plot structure. Thus, repetition, change and non-accomplishment, primary features of Beckett s work, are characteristics that also to be found in Smoleński s works. Both in Beckett s plays and in Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More, time is regarded as a persistence whose intervals and dimensions, generally known as the past, present and future, merge into one with time itself becoming, in the words of the playwright, a monster that both condemns and redeems. The full version of the exhibition s title taken from the book of Alexei Yurchak: Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More. The Last Soviet Generation (Princeton University Press, 2005). Artist Konrad Smoleński (1977) graduated from the Poznań Academy of Fine Arts (2002). He has shown his work in numerous exhibitions at the following venues, among others: Ludwig Museum, Budapest; Pinchuk Art Center, Kyiv; Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen; Waterside Contemporary, London; Offen auf AEG, Nuremberg; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; and Zachęta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw. Holder of the Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage fellowship (2000). Winner of the Deutsche Bank Foundation Award Views He lives and works in Warsaw (PL) and Bern (CH).

Polish Pavilion Commissioner: Hanna Wróblewska Exhibition Curators: Daniel Muzyczuk and Agnieszka Pindera Assistant Commissioner: Joanna Waśko

Polish Pavilion Commissioner: Hanna Wróblewska Exhibition Curators: Daniel Muzyczuk and Agnieszka Pindera Assistant Commissioner: Joanna Waśko Polish Pavilion at the 55th International Art Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia Venice, 1 June 24 November 2013 Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More Konrad Smoleński Polish Pavilion Commissioner:

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