PIANO, 2014


upright piano, electromagnets

Dimensions variable

Infinite duration

Edition of 3 + AP

Video documentation by Tim Bruniges

Photo documentation by Zan Wimberley

Exhibition view:

Firstdraft, Sydney

24th September - 17th October, 2014


PIANO is a new project in a body of work exploring alternate temporal and spatial possibilities for traditional musical instruments. The work reconfigures a 1940s upright piano to become a self-perpetuating tone generator, continuing a line of enquiry first explored with percussive instruments in DRUM ROOM (2013).

As you enter the space of PIANO, what appears to be an unchanging cluster of resonant tones is given evolution through movement; as a roaming listener you become complicit with the undulating harmonic content of the work, giving musical form to infinite, static tones in space.

Electromagnets placed behind the strings on the soundboard of the instrument give the piano agency to vibrate its strings, both directly and in sympathy, activating the resonances of its steel and wooden form.

PIANO embodies a moment in time, a chord without attack or duration; perhaps a chord that may have once, however fleetingly, resonated through the instrument at some point in its seventy year history. Just as an imagined moment of stasis is inevitably defined by the movement around it, so too is this static and eternal chord.


PIANO was commissioned by Campbelltown Arts Centre.

Technical design by Barry Bruniges

Special thanks to Matthew Steffen