London Open Form Pavilion of Air

room 42 ECHOES


Details: The London Open Form Pavilion of Air audiowork is a floating roof of sound, triggered by GPS and accessed via a smartphone, headphones and the app. One of 15 locations in 9 countries in the Open Form Pavilion of Air series, inspired by Polish architects Oskar & Zofia Hansen’s “Open Form” architectural concept, they use sound and site-mapping to offer a playful renewal and reframing of public space as an essential place of engagement for the community.

The Pavilion's area takes the form of a 160 x 160 metre arrow pointing west to Ireland & the sunset. Invisibly occupying part of the Gardens, itself once a King’s playground, the work's concept echoes & reframes the fading colonial notion of a "... vast [British] empire on which the sun never sets" (the words of British colonial administrator Earl George Macartney in his "An Account of Ireland in 1773 by a Late Chief Secretary of that Kingdom").

By walking through different zones in the specific area by the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens while using your mobile phone, the Echoes app and headphones, you become a participatory listener producing a composition in real-time. Your navigation creates a unique choreography via GPS, combining and changing sounds mapped in the Gardens through the app. Hear the park and its context become transformed by the many sounds forming this floating acoustic architecture, revealing an immersive, profoundly spatial and physical experience. The Pavilion has no visible presence outside the app and can only be accessed and enjoyed on-site in Kensington Gardens adjacent to the Serpentine Gallery (on the opposite side to the Serpentine Pavilion).

Robert Curgenven
Robert Curgenven Robert Curgenven creates large-scale audiovisual experiences, performances, albums and installations, that emphasize physicality, our embodied response to sound and its correspondence to location, air, weather and architecture - the underlying significance of context. His recorded output includes "Tailte Cré-Umha (Bronze Lands)" and "SIRÈNE", pipe organ works, for his Recorded Fields Editions; "Oltre" and "Built Through" for LINE imprint; and "Climata", recorded in 15 of James Turrell’s Skyspaces across 9 countries. Festival performances include Sydney Festival, Maerzmusik (Kraftwerk Berlin), Sonic Acts (Amsterdam), Cork Midsummer, Ultrahang (Budapest). Works and installations produced include those for National Gallery of Australia, National Museum of Poland (Krakow), Palazzo Grassi (Venice), Transmediale (Berlin) and National Sculpture Factory (IRL). "Curgenven makes the point that sounds are fundamental to our perception of the world... hearing the complexities of a place and time is intersected by memories of the familiar which are in turn displaced and transformed.” Realtime Magazine (AUS) “Behind the music lurk such [disparate] presences as Alvin Lucier, King Tubby, Murray Schafer and Eliane Radigue.” The Wire Magazine (UK)



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