PREVIEW: Friday 3 May, from 6pm. BOOK PLACE
From 4 May, by the sides of the River Nadder in Wiltshire as it flows towards Salisbury, we present an exhibition reflecting on our times. “De Nada” (“of nothing”) is a show of no things, a moment of time set within the empty space of a 13th Century building, the largest surviving tithe barn in the country. In a space freighted with the histories that have passed through it, the marks of time and a soundscape that speaks to its history will flow through the building creating an exhibition where we invite visitors to consider and reflect on no things. The environmental soundscape will inhabit the barn, taking the visitor on an aural trip down the River Nadder from its source to Salisbury. Commissioned by Messums Creative Foundation from Orlando Gough and Alastair Goolden, the space will be filled with aural creativity and experience drawn from the building and from the surrounding area, alerting the aesthetic senses of hearing. It will be “An enveloping sound installation that encourages contemplation, cleansing our consumptive habits”.
Orlando Gough is a composer who writes operas, choral music, music-theatre, music for dance and theatre, and creates large-scale site-specific work.
“I have always been fascinated by taking music into the landscape. I have made many pieces in rural and urban landscapes which ask the audience to consider the relationship of music and place. These pieces generally involve many performers, some amateur, some professional. Recently I have become interested in taking music into the landscape in more covert ways, using hidden speakers (and in one case speakers hidden in fabricated sheep), so that the music seems to emerge from the landscape. In my home-town Brighton, there is an annual festival of Open Houses where people show and sell artwork amongst everyday clutter. I have always wanted to create a totally empty Open House where the exhibits are the house itself and its sounds. Here, at Messums, I want to bring a river into the gallery, its sounds, its geography, its history, to make music from those sounds, to consider the flow of the river through space and through time, to create something which emerges from nothing and is constantly evolving.”
Alastair Goolden has been Head of Sound at the Bristol Old Vic and worked freelance for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Old Vic Theatre, Royal National Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, Young Vic, Almeida Theatre, Cambridge Theatre Company and Manchester Royal Exchange, among others. His academic posts include Senior Lecturer in Sound Design, Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts.