01.01_04.02.24 :: Robert Curgenven :: Berlin Open Form Pavilion of Air :: Neue Nationalgalerie

Liebig12 is excited to start the program 2024 & in occasion of CTM / Transmediale Vorspiel Festival, presenting artist Robert Curgenven´s “Offene Form Pavillon der Luft Berlin” (Berlin Open Form Pavilion of Air), a floating roof of sound extending over the steps and forecourt of the Neue Nationalgalerie, triggered by GPS and accessed via a smartphone, headphones and the echoes.xyz app.

Inspired by Polish architects Oskar & Zofia Hansen’s “Open Form” architectural concept (ca. 1959), this audiowork is one of 15 locations in 9 countries in the pan-European Open Form Pavilion of Air series, using sound and site-mapping to offer a playful renewal and reframing of public space as an essential place of engagement for the community.

By walking through different zones in front of the Neue Nationalgalerie while using your mobile phone, the Echoes app and headphones, you become a participatory listener producing a composition in real-time. Your navigation creates a unique choreography via GPS, combining and changing sounds mapped across the steps and forecourt through the app. Hear this busy metropolitan location and its context become transformed by the sounds forming this floating acoustic architecture, revealing an immersive, profoundly spatial and physical experience. The Pavilion has no visible presence outside the app and can only be accessed and enjoyed at the Neue Nationalgalerie.

The Offene Form Pavillon der Luft presents a counterpoint to the integrated ‘floating’ roof archetype of the adjacent Mies van der Rohe architecture, highlighting ‘what lies beneath’ – the outer zones of its audio form delineating a vast pit containing multiple modulations which recede at its middle to a solitary leitmotif that creates audible phasing against the surrounding traffic and human flows. Rather than presenting a Nietzschian inversion of the architecture of the Nationalgalerie as a bottomless hole, the Berlin Open Form Pavilion of Air produces a Deleuzian deterritorialisation: where the concern is shifted from a monumental floating architectural plane that defies gravity – in order to enclose spatial volumes for the public’s aestheticized reflections – to a becoming: one which moves in on itself to produce a vertical suspension which liberates public space to act as a psychosocial filter for the aesthetic of the location’s audio context within the German capital’s urban framework.

More exciting technical explanations about the work https://www.rte.ie/culture/2023/0327/1366079-new-music-dublin-welcomes-you-to-the-open-form-pavilion-of-air/ https://www.recordedfields.net/installations/berlin-open-form-pavilion-of-air/

Robert Curgenven creates large-scale audiovisual experiences, performances, albums and installations, that emphasize physicality, our embodied response to sound and its correspondence to location, air, weather and architecture – the underlying significance of context. His recorded output includes “Tailte Cré-Umha (Bronze Lands)” and “SIRÈNE”, pipe organ works, for his Recorded Fields Editions; “Oltre” and “Built Through” for LINE imprint; and “Climata”, recorded in 15 of James Turrell’s Skyspaces across 9 countries. Festival performances include Sydney Festival, Maerzmusik (Kraftwerk Berlin), Sonic Acts (Amsterdam), Cork Midsummer, Ultrahang (Budapest). Works and installations produced include those for National Gallery of Australia, National Museum of Poland (Krakow), Palazzo Grassi (Venice), Transmediale (Berlin) and National Sculpture Factory (IRL). “Curgenven makes the point that sounds are fundamental to our perception of the world… hearing the complexities of a place and time is intersected by memories of the familiar which are in turn displaced and transformed.” Realtime Magazine (AUS) “Behind the music lurk such [disparate] presences as Alvin Lucier, King Tubby, Murray Schafer and Eliane Radigue.” The Wire Magazine (UK)