14 February 2013

Lin Chi-Wei's "Tape Music"

The "performance" took place at Tate Modern in July, as part of a day of talks and events called "Inside/Outside: Materializing the Social". Lin Chi-Wei* unrolled his strip of embroidered cloth, and as each word passed through each person's hands, they read it aloud -
The words - Chinese words, given as a character and as the pinyin (phonetic) version - repeated for a while and then changed. The mixture of sound around you was something you slipped in and out of paying attention to, because some of the time you were attending to what you yourself were saying, and to keeping the scroll moving -
This snatched photo sort of shows the prononciation on the top and the character on the bottom, stitched (with a computer machine) onto an enormously long length of black satin -
See - and hear - the performance on the Tate website - there's lots of rustling and coughing, until it gets drowned out by the voices. (btw, that's me in the blue scarf, before the start of the video; it's a bit of a shock to see yourself unexpectedly "on the web"!) At about the 24-minute mark, the video shifts to a different performance of the piece, with a different scroll and different sound track -
"Tape Music invites the audience to respond to/interact with/interpret a 120 meter long tape with 
embroidered phonetic characters without further instruction. Born from the desire to play electronic 
music through human bodies and interactivities, it has been performed internationally in different 
contexts – schools, community groups, universities, galleries. " 

*"Lin Chi-Wei is a pioneer of experimental and noise music in Taiwan. Based in Beijing, he works as an 
artist and curator whose multi-disciplinary practice spans performance, sound, video and painting.  " See his performance in Berlin on this video.

No comments: