Sophie Erlund

10 Sep - 22 Oct 2011

photo by Jodi Rose
This House Is My Body
10 September - 22 October, 2011

‘The house is broken down piece by piece, layer by layer. The demolition team hacks from all sides at its flesh, removing chunks and leaving wide open gaps. The building sighs as its weary body is slowly decomposing. The strings are celebrating the ephemeral life and warning a new beginning. Desolation fills the space. The gaping holes warm the earth as the flesh sinks and decompose with the reveries of time.’

Sophie Erlund

Sophie Erlund researches architecture as a synonym for the human body and mind. To create her recent work THIS HOUSE IS MY BODY, Erlund recorded the demolition of different public and private buildings over a period of 3 years. Using contact microphones, Erlund did not record the sounds in the air, but the vibration in the physical materials of the building; a technique, which had very guttural, physically perceptible sounds as a result.

The conceptual frame of the sound scape is built up around a classical symphonic structure in four parts, guiding the viewer through the narrative of the demolition of a house, the breakdown of the body. The auditor is introduced to the aggressive attack of the tools and machines into it’s flesh, he witnesses the moaning of the building, the last tired breathing, lead in by the disturbingly melodical song of the saws, before the composition culminates in the last breath and silence.

THIS HOUSE IS MY BODY is an 8-channel composition being played by directional speakers in an empty space. These directional speakers create an acoustic architecture in the way they are adjusted, which allows the viewer to negotiate the content on a formal level. The immaterial tones become a three-dimensional initial body for a sculpture in an expanded definition.

This architectural sound sculpture is a continuation of Erlund’s investigation into the concept of a personified architecture. It can be read as representation of a human body; the swan song of the slowly vanishing house transforms in the listener’s perception into a moaning as he witnesses the breakdown of a body.

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