When: Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Villa Croce
Where: June 13 – September 7, 2014
Opening: une 13th, 17.30-19.30
Press Preview: June 13th, 11.30-13.30
curated by Ilaria Bonacossa e Luca Cerizza
Tomás Saraceno’s work structures a utopic-scientific research for alternative models of social co-existence. His work seems to feed off itself of a pressing urge to explore specific structural patterns present in physical and biological environments, from cosmic macrostructures to biological microsystems. For his exhibition at Villa Croce, Tomás Saraceno continues to explore the complex world of spider webs, which he has extensively investigated for some years. Featured as the central theme of major environmental installations (Galaxy Forming along Filaments, like Droplets along the Strands of a Spider’s Web at the Venice Biennial in 2009 or 14 Billions (Working Title) at the Bonniers Konsthall in Stockholm in 2010), the spider web and its architectural, engineering, social, cosmological and symbolic values are the focus of further investigation for the artist’s project in Genova. Cosmic Jive: Tomás Saraceno. The Spider Sessions is a project specifically designed for Villa Croce by Tomás Saraceno and the Saraceno Studio in collaboration with biologists, musicians, architects, and electronic engineers to develop the artist’s research on spider webs from the perspective of sound and vibration.
The exhibition weaves together the different spaces of the 19th century villa. The first floor features an interactive sound installation: the visitors’ movement activates a series of acoustic responses thanks to passive motion sensors installed in the rooms. Depending on their location in the museum, visitors will hear different compositions. The left speakers emit the sounds of the semi-social spiders playing on pre-existing solitary webs. The right speakers play the solitary spiders on the web that was built by social spiders. Depending on where they are in the room, the public will hear more either the right or the left speaker. Will they become active political listeners?
The sounds consist of the vibrations emitted by different species of spiders as they weave their cosmic webs, mate, or capture their prey and were recorded using laser Doppler vibrometers and other transducers. They are combined with extraterrestrial sounds/vibrations captured by several space agencies.
Enrico Fermi is famous for exclaiming ‘Where is everybody?’ inquiring on the whereabouts of everyone in the
universe. Perhaps we have never managed to have any contact with anyone because we never succeeded in playing in unison a single musical instrument. Maybe these hybrid web instruments are the first huge collective instruments! Spiders play together at the same time a complex symphony, and when they play one string it reverberates in all the other strings… When we are able to tune as a species, then the earth will reverberate… and even the space probe Voyager will pick up our acoustic oscillation from outside the heliosphere! … Big Bang!