Moved to Tears at the Cloisters by a Ghostly Tapestry of Music
2013 09 20
By Jim Dwyer | NYTimes
Wobbling, blissed out, a few in tears, people emerged every 12 minutes or so from the remnant of a 12th-century Spanish chapel tucked into the Cloisters museum.
Something had happened there, up on a hill at the northern end of Manhattan.
“It’s too soon to talk,” Margaret Cardenas said as she left the chapel.
“Too raw,” said another young woman, Alyssa.
Inside the ancient chapel was the first presentation of contemporary art ever at the Cloisters: “The Forty Part Motet,” an 11-minute immersion in a tapestry of voice, each thread as vivid as the whole fabric. A sacred composition of Renaissance England is rendered by the multimedia artist Janet Cardiff through 40 speakers — one for each voice in the Salisbury Cathedral Choir, which performed the piece in 2000. What started as one microphone per singer is now a choir of black high-fidelity speakers arrayed in an oval, eight groupings of soprano, alto, tenor, baritone and bass.
Janet Cardiff’’s sound installation “The Forty Part Motet,’’ 40 loudspeakers in an oval in the Fuentidueña Chapel at the Cloisters in Upper Manhattan.
In the intimate space of the museum’s Fuentidueña Chapel, the sound, from invisible people, as if from ghosts, feels like charged, living sculpture. Through Dec. 8, it plays in a loop all day.
Ms. Cardenas, 24, had stayed in the chapel through four full cycles, walking along the ranks of speakers, then sitting on a bench in the center.
“I’m kind of out of it — I can’t articulate it,” she said. “Each speaker is a different person. It’s not something you think about: you feel it.”
In a moment, she found the word.
“Transcendent,” she said.
Ms. Cardenas was visiting the East Coast from Oregon for a wedding, and came to New York this week specifically to see a monumental installation by James Turrell in the rotunda of the Guggenheim Museum. Then she heard about the Forty Part Motet and trekked uptown. “This is cooler, honestly, than Turrell,” Ms. Cardenas said. “I was super fortunate to get to see both.”
Others stumbled onto the “Forty Part Motet” while doing a lap around the city museum circuit. No one who sets foot inside the Cloisters can miss the sounds; although they are at their most powerful within the jeweled acoustic space of the chapel, they soar through the building.
“We had no idea it was here, and then we heard it all along as we went around the exhibits,” said Bengt Ehlim, who was visiting the city from Sweden with his wife, Susanne. She seemed to be stepping out of a trance.
“I am so really moved,” Ms. Ehlim said.
The core of Ms. Cardiff’s installation is a motet, “Spem in Alium,” a Latin fragment of the phrase “In No Other Is My Hope,” composed by Thomas Tallis sometime in the 16th century. Its transformation into the “Forty Part Motet” has been exhibited at MoMA PS1, the museum’s space in Long Island City, Queens.
“I’d seen it at MoMA, and the gallery was very neutral,” Jeff Gray, 33, a computer programmer and musician, said outside the chapel. “But there’s nothing like this kind of space, the resonance of brick with wood roof. The kind of ghost qualities are a lot more apparent here. Everything bounces a lot more: you hear a voice over here, and you kind of feel it float around you.”
Read the full article at: nytimes.com
The Forty Part Motet - Site (Met Museum)
Welcome to the pleasuredome: How we evolved to love music
Is Your Taste In Music Influenced By The Shape Of Your Skull?
The Quickening Art: The True Healing Power of Music
Listen to the Music of the Spheres
The Vibrating Cathedral of Cologne
Heartbeats of choir singers synchronize when they harmonize
Latest News from our Front Page
Guccifer: Pennsylvania City to be Nuked Next Year
2014 11 25
From Youtube: Renowned hacker Guccifer, who accessed the private emails of numerous top military, political and intelligence leaders, told the New York Times that a city in Pennsylvania is the target of a nuke attack in 2015. Guccifer also revealed that he is sitting on an archive of hacked emails that have not been publicly released.
Israeli Police Caught On Video Hosing ‘Skunk Spray’ on Palestinian Elementary Schools and Protesters
2014 11 25
Israeli police in Jerusalem have been caught on video recently spraying East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhoods with a concoction they call “skunk spray”. The liquid is a mixture of sewage and rotting animal roadkill.
The result of the police hosing down neighborhoods, elementary schools and protesters with the mix is a putrid smell that seems almost impossible to get off or be ...
The New Normal: Artist Butchers "Disney Princesses" with Breast Cancer Scars
2014 11 25
Comment: Natural remedies for cancer, like: diet, vitamins, minerals and other supplements are NEVER addressed. Neither are chemicals and wi-fi saturated environment recognized for the rise in these new epidemics. Instead ... what do they do? They normalize it. Like it’s just the new thing you need to do. Change nothing and adapt to these new circumstances of mutilation kids. ...
Gasp, Turkish President Observes Reality: "Women and Men Created Differently"
2014 11 25
Comment: Wow, a politician that manage to observe reality. Shocking and offensive no doubt, I wonder how the pro Muslim Feminists in Scandinavia and the rest of the West will react to this.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan set off a new controversy on Monday, declaring that women are not equal to men and accusing feminists of not understanding the special ...
The Libertarian Case for Free Trade And Restricted Immigration
2014 11 25
It is frequently maintained that "free trade" belongs to "free immigration" as "protectionism" does to "restricted immigration." That is, the claim is made that while it is not impossible that someone might combine protectionism with free immigration, or free trade with restricted immigration, these positions are intellectually inconsistent, and thus erroneous. Hence, insofar as people seek to avoid errors, they ...
|More News » |