Rashad Salim and Marion Wood
This project aims to de-place the obsolete by literal deconstruction of cultural constraint; not to supplant with new confined preparedness but re-place with open potential. Liberated of mechanical interface and clean the defunct piano is in effect recycled into a new space/object, a “sound cabinet” reclaiming analogue instrumental memory and function. I stress this is only towards pianos deemed defunct and not an attitude to be taken towards pianos in general! The event of "liberating" (moving, removal of obstructive parts and cleaning) the piano creates incident sounds that are raw outcomes of the process. Documenting these sounds and either/or sampling and feeding them back is interesting with regard to memory and the conference theme. But it is the liberated piano, the sound cabinet as a space/object and instrument of engagement that I find especially appealing. The manner and means of engaging is unlimited and open to all at whatever age, background and musical proficiency. It is this aspect with the deep memory of civilisation the piano defines that I wish to present at Exeter and further explore with time. Un-liberated, a defunct piano remains at least furniture conducive to conversation, memory and with a little intervention (burnished pedals, found images, books, etc) can allude to specific issues such as was presented at Edinburgh Reel Iraq Festival. http://living.scotsman.com/art-reviews/Visual-arts-review-Creativity-vs.5433278.jp. During the Workshop in September participants, and students, especially Music Scholars with the enthusiasm of Marion Wood, the director of music for the University, did indeed have a musical conversation with the art piece, and you are encouraged to do the same.
Arts and Humanities Research Council
De-constructed piano. Photography by Tim Pestridge and Seán Goddard.