Transformer x 2 (2016) – site-specific sound installation for Kubaai, Bocholt DE

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Transformer x 2 is a site-specific sound installation created for the entrance space of a disused textile factory, part of the Kubaai cultural quartier, in Bocholt, Germany. It consists of a harmonized and modulated hum of a large transformer projected into an existing vacant space, and accompanied by white and black fluorescent lighting.

The idea has been to transform the monotonous “cold” hum of the existing transformer in the entrance space into an elevated and “warm” state of sound, and make the crude and mundane architecture appear more sensuous and inviting. Another consideration has been the sounds coming from other works in the exhibition: the piece should be able to accommodate those “interferences” as well, their indeterminate behavior, textures and tones introducing new, subtle layers to my piece.

The sound-producing technology (speakers, audio players and cables) has been hidden from the view: the emphasis is on the vacant architectural space, transformed by acousmatic sound.

The piece was made for ARIS_Station exhibition, held 24.06 – 10.07.16 and curated by Prof. Andreas Oldörp, and it formed part of the Soundseeing VI sound art festival held annually in the Münster region of Germany.

 

This is not an actual recording of the installation in situ but a studio reconstruction. Given that the site’s acoustical properties and environmental condition – lighting, material construction, 3-D speaker positions and other sounds – as well as one’s movement in the space are absent from this version, it doesn’t as such represent the accurate condition and perception of the sound, let alone the overall experience of the work found in its original physical setting.

 

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