Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Mitchell F Chan's 'Visions of the Amen'

Kinetic Sculpture Installation, Performance and Exhibition Reception:
Friday, January 22, 2010, 7-10 p.m. Performance, one night only.

The Spoke Club Gallery
600 King Street West, 4th Floor

The Spoke Club and O’Born Contemporary present Mitchell F Chan’s Visions of the Amen, an architectural-scale immersive installation of string and brass bars, which is brought to life as soprano Ashleigh Semkiw performs a piece by Oliver Messaien. As her voice moves through different pitches, the different strings in the cage are excited; the louder the pitch is delivered, the faster each string rotates, and the resultant shape carved out becomes wider and shorter.

The exhibition also features two series of images mounted on the Spoke Club walls: the first, a set of concept and design “sketches” pertaining to the project, executed by Chan as full size paintings in encaustic, oil, string and collage on linen; the second, a series of drawings presenting mechanisms and concepts of the architectural absurd, by Tom Ngo.

Mitchell F Chan’s work is exhibited in association with Engine Gallery and Tom Ngo’s work, in association with LE Gallery.

Visions of the Amen is a kinetic sculpture that responds to song to change form. Each string is hung from a motor and weighed down by a brass rod. As the singer sings, software written by the artist analyses the frequency and volume of the note being sung. Each string is activated by a different note, and spun with a velocity corresponding to the volume of that note. The rotation of the string creates the dynamic three-dimensional volumes seen in the video. As the strings are pulled outward to create those forms, so do they pull up on the brass rods, inciting them to dance along.

Friday night. I unfortunately can't make it. It'll be busy though, so go early.

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