SONAR iN la Chartleuse

Photo: Yasuhiro Chida

Extension labyrinth/La Chartreuse, Avignon, France
Glass bottle, Water, LED
D:2m x W:2m x H:3m

This work, shown at La Chartreuse in Avignon, France, was composed of water lenses and echoes within the space. Four glass bottles, each with a hole on one side and an LED light attached to it, were suspended horizontally to a vertical metal structure. Water dripped from the structure to the uppermost bottle, and when a drop of water caused the water inside the bottle to reach a critical amount, a droplet fell to the bottle below. This continued on to the third and fourth bottles until Finally, a waterdrop reached a suikinkutsu (glass-vessel Japanese water harp) placed on the Floor. When the waterdrops dripped into the bottles, the surfaces rippled and created subtle sounds. The water in the bottles that manifested semicircular, cylindrical forms functioned as cylindrical lenses, and projected linear lights on the floor, which wavered due to the water ripples. Thus, the four linear lights that derived from the four bottles created a square form along the joints of the tile floor.
This exhibition room was the sole place in the former monastery where monks were allowed to speak. But the room was designed so that the echoes of voices lingered in order to avoid having several people talk simultaneously. Thus, even though the sounds of the waterdrops were almost inaudible, the lingering effect made it possible for the viewers to hear the sounds quite clearly. Via the dripping sounds and the lights, the two attributes of this space were connected̶the echoes produced by the dome ceiling and the checkered-pattern floor. (T. N.)