"The language of birds is very ancient, and like other ancient modes of speech, very elliptical; little is said, but much is meant and understood." -- Gilbert White, qtd. by Susan Howe, The Quarry
“aeolian harps” is the second in the mahicantuck series, winter 2016-17.
The mockingbird is a master sampler, offering a seemingly endless mashup of birdsong. Not all of his quotes are identifiable; some speculate parts of his repertoire have been carried down from extinct songbirds. The recording that accompanies the video in this installation should fill the room.
Aside from the video, the walls of this room will be bare. The small black and white 120 shots might dangle in the corners, hung from the ceiling with twine. The rest of the photographic record--images of nets, crab cages, sieves, screens, colanders, slotted spoons, cootie catchers, and a "hammock harp"--will be scattered on the floor under panels of frosted glass. Visitors will have to walk across this “ice” before entering the third and final room.
script unavailable (we await the app that'll translate birdsong into English)