Posted by on Oct 10, 2013 in |

This compelling installation points us toward the bandwidths of sound that we do not normally notice, because we tend to experience them peripherally as ambient “white noise,” or because we cannot actually hear them. While Rotes Rauschen literally emits a drone-like sound, creating a palpably physical vibration in the listener because it encompasses strong low frequencies, the installation also metaphorically synchs viewers with an extended red noise domain. It elicits the elusive infra-sensory domain of vibrations, tremors and sounds from the ground that do not cross over the threshold of our limited sensing capacity. The installation operates as both a “sculptural sense organ” and a seismic instrument. A curved oblong sculpture is suspended in the space. It is irregularly – even roughly – shaped, since its outline is based on the graphic output of a seismometer on the floor. The sculpture becomes a kind of listening ear that is attentive to all the features of the site, including the immediate environment, the city outside and the presence of viewers themselves. Seismic data is transmitted from a pendulum on the seismometer’s vertical axis, passing through three wires and into the sculpture. The events of the installation most fully unfold when a viewer walks inside the sculpture and is enveloped within it: when data is transmitted, the wires contract and expand, generating sound resonances; the sculpture also changes shape according to the intensity of the seismic activity; and, as a result, the red noise drone is amplified variously for each viewer who is encapsulated within this idiosyncratic device for tuning in to the earth.