Experimental Sound Art with a Toddler

So, we’ve been in quarantine again this week. As you may have discerned from my last post, we’re struggling with things to do. Lucky then that we were invited to view a friend’s MA end -of-course Sound Art exhibition at London College of Communication. I wasn’t entirely sure what it entailed, but it was a good chance for an outing, so off we went.

Happily for Reuben, this involved going to Elephant & Castle. Unhappily for Reuben, there was still no real Elephant there. You’d think he would have learnt by now. I showed him the red elephant on top of the shopping centre, but once again this was not right. Ah well, he can learn to be choosy when he learns to control his bottom.

Back to the exhibition…It took a bit of finding, as the entrance to the Nursery Gallery was in the car park at the side and the only likely-looking door was labelled “danger of electric shock, do not touch”. I guess this was a student thing, but I’m quite literal, so I looked at all the other possible doors before gingerly trying that one. It’s OK. I didn’t get shocked.

And I didn’t get too shocked by the exhibits either. I may have mentioned on our trip to the Tate Modern that I don’t really “get” art, but this was more accessible than I’d expected. Reuben was pleased that so many exhibits had headphones on, and happily stood and listened for a while to the “Arm-wrestling” film, which was  recorded on the streets form various parts of London. When I put the other set, all I could hear was “f@~#ing c@?#”, so maybe it was time to move Roo on… He thought so too and said “I don’t want to watch this anymore” and switched it off. When I switched it back on, it was just static…oops…Luckily one of the students came and sorted it out, while we wandered off nonchalantly.

One exhibit was actually filmed at the Tate Modern, sadly a week before we were there. A crowd of people walked in, each holding an MP3 player or phone that was playing an animal or bird so it produced a symphony of nature noises in the Turbine Hall. It was pretty cool, and Roo was excited to see somewhere he’d been with his friend C. Another film was of the Barbican, which we’ve also been to fairly recently. I never blogged about that, did I? It was on my due date, it all went wrong, we got stuck in a lot of traffic. Painful memories. Turns out it was all based on an American’s assumption that the Barbican was on the South Bank. She blogged about it here.

Roo’s favourite thing were the vintage toys he found scattered in various corners of the room. I wasn’t sure they were really for playing with, but he had a sneaky play with them before we moved on. I liked the vintage maps and the red cassette tapes, even though I had to explain to an incredulous Roo what they were. I feel so old.

We weren’t there long, but it was more of a hit than I’d expected. I didn’t get many photos as I was a bit busy trying to control him. And i didn’t get much time to look at my friend Greta’s exhibit – several simultaneous films on the meaning of sound – but it was pretty cool. It’s only on till 24/11, so if you want to go, go quickly!

More details here (official website)

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2 Responses to Experimental Sound Art with a Toddler

  1. Pingback: London with a Tiddler part 2 | London With a Toddler

  2. Pingback: The Ragged Canteen (Beaconsfield Gallery) and Vauxhall City Farm revisited | London With a Toddler

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