23-09-2012

New York How it all began

A Brooklyn Bridge Daydream in 2009

“In September 2012 I found out that the 130th anniversary of the Brooklyn Bridge was coming up on May 23rd 2013.  This discovery reminded me of a vivid daydream I had in 2009 whilst doing a residency at Eyebeam Centre for Art and Technology in New York City.  During my stay curator Amanda McDonald Crowley had suggested that I immerse myself in the city.  Every day I would walk from Chelsea to the Brooklyn Bridge, where I found myself inspired by the cacophony of sounds that I heard – the clonking of footsteps on the wooden walkway, the whirring of bicycles, the drone of traffic and chatter of visitors.   It struck me that all of these journey sounds were resonating through the steel cables of the bridge and I wondered if I could create an instrument that would enable pedestrians to release and play these deep hidden sounds.  One day, sitting cross-legged by the bridges Brooklyn tower, I imagined a shadowy figure attached to the bridge via a complexed web of colourful musical strings.  Part-bridge and part-instrument, I decided that the player of the bridge would be called a movician – an individual who controlled the bridge’s song via their movement and interaction with this bridge instrument.  Mirroring the steel suspension cables of the bridge, I wondered if this instrument should be harp-like, with retractable strings that physically attach the user or Movician’s body to the bridge, literally turning them into a human harp.  It was at that point that I notice that the Brooklyn Bridge was in fact a giant, elaborate harp…” Di Mainstone