from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
 

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin

24 ‘prepared pianos’ have gone on view in berlin as part of new exhibition. commissioned by italian collector and patron francesco conz, the musical instruments have been altered by major avant-garde artists from the 1970s to the early 2000s. the exhibition, which remains on view until january 19, 2020, is complemented by musical performances, tying the artworks to various contemporary approaches and explorations on sound.

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
george brecht | iced dice, 1989 | piano, dry ice

 

 

titled ‘pause: broken sounds/remote music’, the exhibition is presented at the kw institute for contemporary art in berlin. selected from a collection of over 65 ‘prepared pianos,’ the 24 works in the exhibition are from the collection of francesco conz. first acquainted with the viennese actionism and new york avant-garde movements in the early 1970s, conz grew personally engaged with the artists and their creative process. turning his home in asolo, italy, into an international meeting place for artists to live and work, he spent the next thirty years working with more than 120 artists, commissioning and producing the over 3,000 works that constitute the archivio today.

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
george brecht | iced dice (detail), 1989 | piano, dry ice

 

 

building on john cage’s first artistic exploration of the medium at the end of the 1930s, the ‘prepared pianos’ are commonly understood as pianos altered by placing objects between or on the strings. throughout the years, a wide range of artists have manipulated the instrument — moving beyond the alteration of sound to fully rethink the structure and form of the piano as a privileged place for artistic creativity. the selection of pianos in the exhibition includes works by robert watts, carolee schneemann, jack hirschman, ay-O, nam june paik, allan kaprow, dorothy iannone, among many others.

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
walter marchetti | piano del papel higiénico, 1990 | toilet paper

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
benjamin patterson | piano d’oiseux tropical, 1989 | piano, bamboo stool, artificial plants and fruits, oil paint

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
benjamin patterson | piano d’oiseux tropical (detail), 1989 | piano, bamboo stool, artificial plants and fruits, oil paint

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
bernard heidsieck | piano intégré, 1989 | piano, electronic cards, cables

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
esther ferrer | piano con alas, 1986 | piano, metal, fabric, white marker

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
larry miller | remote music, 1990 | piano, plastic tube, fabric, string, laquier on casted bronze, black paint on wooden structure

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
larry miller | remote music (detail), 1990 | piano, plastic tube, fabric, string, laquier on casted bronze, black paint on wooden structure

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
joe jones | pianoforte in legno nero, 1973 | piano, paint, electronic device, customized noise instruments

from toilet paper to dry ice, 24 manipulated musical instruments go on view in berlin
joe jones | pianoforte in legno nero (detail), 1973 | piano, paint, electronic device, customized noise instruments

 

 

exhibition info: 

 

presented by: archivio conz

location: kw institute for contemporary art, berlin

dates: january 15—19, 2020

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