Sunken Gardens at Caramoor through November 2

Posted on Sep 25, 2014 in Art, Sound

It’s been some time since I last posted, and oddly enough, the idea that began as a possible conception of a piano piece has in that year or so taken shape as a very large outdoor sound installation (though I am toying with the idea of creating a piano or chamber piece out of it as well). It’s part of the really wonderful “In the Garden of Sonic Delights” sound art exhibition at the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts in Katonah, New York, and it runs until the first week of November. I’m excited to be in the show with artists such as Laurie Anderson, Trimpin, Annea Lockwood, Bob Bielecki, and Stephen Vitiello.


Here’s a snippet of what you’ll hear as you walk around:

Here’s some of what I’ve written about it:

“Sunken Gardens is a participatory audio installation, in which a new layer of sound — a sonic underwater world full of bubbling noises, creaky technology, sonar sounds, oddly vibrating chords, surprising fragments of text, and so on — is added to the existing landscape. These sounds are inaudible to the naked ear, but visitors, with the help of special receivers amplifying this sound field (through induction loop technology), are able to sonically navigate this invisible soundscape, creating their own musical and narrative mix by walking amidst the many elements which make up its sonic and geographical structure. Sunken Gardens was inspired by a reading of the Jules Verne novel, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.”

Here’s a nice little video Caramoor produced about Sunken Gardens:

I’m grateful to Stephan Moore and Caramoor for commissioning the piece, Harvard for giving me the time and resources to make it happen, and Ranjit Bhatnagar for his wizardly technical supervision.

Find out more about the In the Garden of Sonic Delights exhibition, or read more about Sunken Gardens here on my site.