Koerperwellen – Wellenkoerper

At low frequencies sound appears as movement. On the threshold of listening our perception of sound changes – sound becomes visible and tangible. The complex experience of music through seeing, listening and feeling is the topic of the installation "Koerperwellen – Wellenkoerper" ("Body Waves – Wave Body").

Four flat water basins on metal frames of different sizes were mounted alongside two free-floating wooden planks joined in the shape of a T. In the bottom of the basins as well as underneath the planks »body-shakers« (speakers for transmitting low frequencies) were fitted. The six channels of the sound composition, which takes the sounds of water, glass and human voices as its starting point, were distributed to the six speakers.

When stepping onto the planks the visitor feels subtle vibrations and sees fine waves ripple in circles on the light-flooded surface of the water. The quiet sounds of the 37-minute composition seem elusive, tracking the transitions from sound to movement, from the auditive to tactile and visual perception. Body-shakers transform corporeal elements like water, wood and air into visible, audible and palpable vibrations. Thus sound fades from hearing and becomes a tingling sensation, waves vanish from the surface of the water and become audible patterns of sound.

Originally designed for the atrium of the SFB-building in Berlin, the proportions of this installation reflect the yard’s well-balanced functionalist architecture.

(Dr. Kersten Glandien)