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David Byrne's "Playing the Building" Installation Opens This Saturday

  • Wednesday, May 28, 2008
    David Byrne's "Playing the Building" Installation Opens This Saturday

    David Byrne's latest project, Playing the Building, is set to open this Saturday in downtown New York City. Byrne has created a sound installation in which he's turned an entire building, the early 20th-century Battery Maritime Building, into a working instrument that visitors can play. Admission is free, with an opening reception Saturday evening at 6 PM and the exhibit open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through August 10.

    In an interview with Time Out New York, the artist explains how it all works, how he conceived of the idea, and how Creative Time, the presenting organization, chose this particular building for him to transform.

    "The idea is that the public can sit down and play this thing, and that when they do, it should be pretty obvious what's going on," says Byrne in the interview. "They'll see machines mounted up on the girders and the pipes and the columns, and they'll notice that as soon as they hit a key, a sound comes from the building."

    "I think what's nice about it is that it takes away any advantage that a trained musician has," he goes on to say. "It brings everyone to a level playing field. A great musician sitting down to play it would be at about the same level as a kid."

    To read the interview, visit timeout.com/newyork. For more on the project, visit creativetime.org.

on May 28, 2008 - 7:18pm
Excerpt: 

David Byrne's latest project, Playing the Building, is set to open this Saturday in downtown New York City. Byrne has created a sound installation in which he's turned an entire building, the early 20th-century Battery Maritime Building, into a working instrument that visitors can play. Admission is free, with an opening reception Saturday evening at 6 PM and the exhibit open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through August 10. 

Copy: 

David Byrne's latest project, Playing the Building, is set to open this Saturday in downtown New York City. Byrne has created a sound installation in which he's turned an entire building, the early 20th-century Battery Maritime Building, into a working instrument that visitors can play. Admission is free, with an opening reception Saturday evening at 6 PM and the exhibit open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through August 10.

In an interview with Time Out New York, the artist explains how it all works, how he conceived of the idea, and how Creative Time, the presenting organization, chose this particular building for him to transform.

"The idea is that the public can sit down and play this thing, and that when they do, it should be pretty obvious what's going on," says Byrne in the interview. "They'll see machines mounted up on the girders and the pipes and the columns, and they'll notice that as soon as they hit a key, a sound comes from the building."

"I think what's nice about it is that it takes away any advantage that a trained musician has," he goes on to say. "It brings everyone to a level playing field. A great musician sitting down to play it would be at about the same level as a kid."

To read the interview, visit timeout.com/newyork. For more on the project, visit creativetime.org.

Publish date: 
Wednesday, May 28, 2008 - 16:15
Article Type: 
featuredimage: 
David Byrne Playing the Building organ