|April 2, 2011||to||May 30, 2011|
Fabrica presents Janet Cardiff’s The Forty Part Motet. The piece is a reworking of Spem in Alium a renaissance choral work by Thomas Tallis. A choir of forty voices is represented by forty speakers laid out in an oval in Fabrica’s exhibition space, each speaker relaying one voice. The speakers are grouped in clusters of five, reflecting the nature of the composition, written for eight choirs of five people.
As a visitor to the gallery your relationship to the music is fundamentally different than it would be in a concert hall. Instead of your traditional audience position, static in front of the choir, you are free to walk amongst them, to construct the sound you hear, to follow a particular voice or melody, or stand and let the sound wash over and engulf you.
“I am interested in how sound may physically construct a space in a sculptural way and how a viewer may choose a path through this physical yet virtual space.” – Janet Cardiff
The exact circumstance of the commissioning of Spem in Alium is unknown, though it is thought to have been written for the birthday of Protestant monarch Elizabeth I. Tallis himself was a committed Catholic and remained so despite working at court through the Reformation.
We are pleased once again to be working in association with Brighton Festival and that this piece so accurately reflects some of the themes and concerns of this year’s festival and its director Aung San Suu Kyi, the power of the voice both individually and collectively.
Janet Cardiff’s work combines sound, movement and the environment. Based in Berlin, Janet’s work has included media such as film, video and photography. She participated in the Munster Skulptur Projekte in 1997, exhibiting in the Carnegie International in Pittsburgh, 1999. She also represented Canada at the Venice Biennale in 2001 in collaboration with George Bures Miller. A major survey of Cardiff Miller works has toured to PS1 in New York, The Musée d’Art Contemporain, Montreal, The Astrop Fearnley Museum, Oslo and the Castello Rivoli In Turin. A current touring exhibition of Cardiff Miller works will be seen at MACBA, Barcelona, Institut Mathildenhöhe Darmstadt and the Miami Art Centre, Miami. She is currently represented by Luhring Augustine Gallery in NYC and Barbara Weiss Gallery in Berlin.
Fabrica is a contemporary art gallery housed in a former Regency church in the centre of Brighton with a remit to make contemporary art available and accessible to as wide an audience as possible.