Artboard 12
Focus On

30.05.2017 - 19H10 by La peau de l’ours

Focus On VOID

Coherent, so artichokes against its race. Today or tomorrow, hot races for rents and processing of balls.

It is with these words that begins the work “Noise is Full of Words / Words are Full of Noise” by the sound artists,VOID.

Noise is Full of Words is first of all the title of a performance during which vocal dictation software writes what it understands from the muffled noise produced by an electric guitar.

An uncluttered design, a bottle of red wine (Italian, of course) and the music of Chet Baker, the scene is set for an interview in the profoundest of silence.

The Collective

VOID is a collective of sound artists based in Brussels and created in 2013 by two-person team of Arnaud Eeckhout (Belgium, 1987) and Mauro Vitturini (Italy, 1985).

Our two artists met in Mons, the European capital of culture in 2015, in the context of an artistic residence.

Formed only 4 years ago, the collective, which in particular won the Prix Médiatine in 2015, was chosen in 2016 to participate in the collective exhibit “Not All That Falls Has Wings” in the prestigious contemporary art space, Arter, in Istanbul.

VOID: a three-dimensional space without structure and orientation.

They make visible that which we cannot perceive, they sculpture the sound in the space and transform silence into noise.

In their minimalist installations, there is a simultaneous consideration of the form and the function, where everything that is not useful for the mechanisation of the silence is eliminated.

The interaction

 

In their work, everything interacts; the works are connected with each other and the installation of one piece leads to the creation of another. The observers’ gaze itself interacts with the work depending on whether they focus on the visual, sound or technical dimension of the piece.

 

In the work of VOID, the space influences the perception of the work, but the opposite is also true, as with “Sound Never Dies,” where the 3 words made from anechoic, or sound deadening, foam modify the acoustics of the piece.

 

History, particularly the history of art, acts on the work of VOID as a sort of response to be given:

 

Mauro: « Courses in art history help you a lot, because you can rely on hundreds of years of research, work and experimentation in just a few hours…

 

Arnaud takes as an example the exhibit of emptiness by Yves Klein :

 

« You save time and you can go further by relying on what already exists. Others have already placed the landmarks and worked on space and emptiness, and its conceptualisation. It is up to us to continue the work.

Unremitting work

The difficulty consists of re-inventing themselves constantly, even when they are asked to produce pieces that have already been successful.

The financial aspect and resources must never hold back the quality of their work and the duo willingly admits that they are most creative when under constraints.

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We are small, but we play like the majors.

They tell us, moreover, with humour that when they were chosen in 2016 to participate in the exhibit “Not All That Falls Has Wings” at Arter (in Istanbul), the other invited artists were surrounded by complete teams and it took the others two days to realise that our two prodigies were not assistants.

VOID attaches enormous importance to communications and they have understood that in order to exist, they had to stand out from the crowd without, however, falling into the excesses of celebrity.

In particular, they maintain their creativity by keeping a distance from a certain “Star-System.”

Working tirelessly, they force themselves to take time to re-invent themselves, but they see their weekends as a sort of “rehab” during which they await Monday morning impatiently in order to start work again.

The influences

Music, of course…

    • For Mauro, classical music and metal, which he particularly loved as a youth.
    • For Arnaud, who grew up with a father who was a fan of Punk and the guitar, the influence of rock and groups such as Pink Floyd, the Beatles or Nirvana: “With my father, we could spend a half hour listening to and discussing a guitar passage in a song.”

For both of them, minimalist music and the contemporary composer, Philip Glass, are real inspirations for their work.

 

The leading lights

The communications theorist, the Canadian Marshall Mcluhan, the author of the famous “The Message is the Medium.”

John Cage, the famous American composer of contemporary experimental music, who created the first performance with Merce Cunningham.

But also artists

Like the artist Rachel and her solidification of emptiness, and the American sculptor and video artist Bruce Nauman.

Epicureans at heart, the conversation also strays into Italian cooking and their red wine preferences…

Research

How to adapt the message to the location? The work to the space? The form and the function? Mauro and Arnaud compare themselves to musicians who do a “sound check” before starting to play.

Our work is almost psychological research where we deconstruct what took enormous amounts of time and energy to make...

In the work “Noise is Full of Words,” the guitar, and thus the sound, is a vector by means of which we play with artificial intelligence.

What is interesting is to divert this rationalisation pushed to the extreme, by algorithms and search engines.

Research in the work of VOID is also the intentional creation of accidents.

“If the accident is interesting, the result is interesting…”


Photos : Miles Fischler