I Am Sitting in a Partially Buried Boombox

Sculptural sound installation, dimensions variable

I Am Sitting in a Partially Buried Boombox consists of a re-situating of Alvin Lucier’s seminal 1969 composition I Am Sitting in a Room within a minature variation on Robert Smithson’s equally seminal public sculpture Partially Buried Wood Shed from 1970. A pile of earth on the gallery floor almost entirely conceals a portable CD player with attached speakers (or “boombox”).

The boombox plays the artist’s own idiosyncratic re-performance of Lucier’s original composition. The recorded sound of this performance is not, however, fed back into the room to reveal the space’s resonant frequencies, as it is in the original. Instead, the sound simply emits into the dirt of the pile that partially buries it, becoming absorbed and filtered by the dense material packed around it, while at the same time enlivening of the fixed sculptural formation, causing liberatory vibrations in the very matter of the work. The productive tension between weight (both physical and historical), burial, and erasure on the one hand, and chaotic variation, vibratory disruption, and recombinative mutation on the other is central to the animating dynamic the work.

First presented at the nkd Nordic Artists Center, Dale, Norway

audio excerpt
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