In a Scandinavian landscape of sand and lyme grass, 88 zebra finches play experimental compositions on 17 electric guitars and basses.
With the installation “From Here to Ear” v. 21, the French artist and composer Céleste Boursier-Mougenot has transformed CC’s 600 m2 hall into a giant aviary where 44 zebra finch couples will reside throughout the winter. Flying around freely, the birds will settle on the strings of the instruments as if they were wires between city roofs or branches of a tree. The chirping of the finches and the sounds they make as their beaks and claws connect physically with the electric instruments ll the hall with ambient music. A live concert with no beginning or end.
In from here to ear v. 21 we are invited to enter the finches’ territory; a light and poetic soundscape, complete with labyrinthine pathways that we can explore as we witness how the finches gather on the strings, drink from upside-down cymbals in the sand and nest in hanging clusters. The installation offers an immersive experience that stimulates all our senses. Our movements become part of the work, equally important as the finches’ reactions, because our presence in the room affects the birds, prompting constant changes to the unpredictable music.
Céleste Boursier-Mougenot (b. 1961) lives and works in Sète, France. Having been a composer with the French avant-garde theatre Pascal Rambert for ten years, he began working with installation art in the mid-1990s, incorporating sounds and stage craft from the realm of theatre in his art. Boursier-Mougenot has presented solo exhibitions at prominent venues such as Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal in Montréal, Palais de Tokyo in Paris and the Barbican Art Gallery in London. In 2015 he represented France at the Venice Biennale.
Céleste Boursier-Mougenot | filmed by Out of Sync | Cph Nov 2016
On view | Nov 25 2016–Mar 5 2017
Artworks courtesy | Céleste Boursier-Mougenot | CC
Text | Copenhagen Contemporary
© Out of Sync 2017