Carrè, Fox, Julius, Kubisch, Kuhn, Piscitelli, Roden, Suzuki, Yui: Before and After Sound
The intention of this exhibition, which will open on Thursday, May 8 at 6:30 pm, is to consider and bring to light particular aspects of the international research regarding sound. In this sense, it's an atypical exhibition, because sound, as a physical phenomenon perceptible through the sense of hearing, is not actually present in any of the works of art displayed. All the works do, however, refer to it, treating it as a possibility, the before – and there will be designs for sound installations or 'performance' scores – and as an effect, to be taken in consideration afterward. In this second case, the after, the artist starts from a reflection upon a work of his own involving sound, or turns his attention to an acoustic phenomenon to create, by means of drawing, photography or writing, a new work in which the presence of sound is virtual, evoked or represented, often giving rise to truly synesthetic events.
The exhibition proposes examples of interventions of both kinds of research, and the selection of the nine participating artists has been made so as to compose the widest possible panorama of the vast, heterogeneous expressive context commonly indicated by the term sound art. Known masters of sound research within the visual arts, such as the American TERRY FOX, and the Germans CHRISTINA KUBISCH, HANS PETER KUHN and ROLF JULIUS are present here, each absolutely diverse from the others, as for their viewpoints or their results.
Active since '70, FOX is an all-round artist who enacts sound, in a purely performative sense, beyond making or propagating it by means of electrical systems or electronics; KUBISCH, an artist and musician, is the author of extremely elegant and rarified intallations that often put sound into relation with the lighting; KUHN utilizes the same elements but with a major visual and acoustic impact and the use of recurrent kinetic effects, through the continual shifting (computer programmed) of the acoustic signal between the various sources placed around the space; JULIUS, creator of extraordinary sound landscapes that he organizes with a precise dosage of the balances and the interactions between space and time, associating minimal objects and figures – mostly black and red – with low-volume sounds (small sounds, as he calls them).
Alongside them, a figure who's of no lesser importance, though decidedly eccentric, is the polyhedric Japanese AKIO SUZUKI: musician, artist, performer, cartoonist... All these parts come together with naturalness in a work of great simplicity, clarity, light and fundamentally ephemeral, permeated as it is with the feeling of impermanence that belongs to the author's culture.
The American STEVE RODEN has points of contact with this last artist, regarding his versatility (but also with Fox, for the strong relevance of a visual side in his work, along with the parallel and complementary acoustic aspect); younger than the other artists, he's a painter and sculptor, video-maker, performer and musician, author of many Cds. Another case in point is the French artist PATRICE CARRÉ – present, together with Suzuki, Julius, Kuhn, Kubisch and Fox, in the important group show "Visual Sound" at the Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh in 2001 – both for the noteworthy plastic strength of many of his works, and for the always ironic or 'light' use, prevalently illustrative (analogous to that of the soundtrack in cinematographic language) of the sound material, often the product of 'collages' made utilizing a wide variety of materials.
Completing the exhibition are the young artists PAOLO PISCITELLI and MIKI YUI: the work of the first represents a rather rare (practically unique in Italy) and very personal example of an acoustic research in the field of sculpture, of which it constitutes a chapter of not secondary importance; whereas the second artist, a Japanese electronic musician, was revealed as the author of an intriguing ethereal sound installation last year in the group exhibition "Resonanzen" at the Stadtgalerie in Saarbrücken (in which, Julius, Kubisch and Roden, among others, also participated).
The works exhibited have been made over a span of time starting from 1972 up to the present; many of them are being shown for the first time, and in large part have been created expressly for this show.