‘Playing the Building’ Sound Installation by David Byrne

The latest episode of Boing Boing TV features Xeni Jardin visting David Byrne in NYC where he gives her a tour of a the Battery Maritime Building that he has turned into a giant musical instrument, part of his Playing the Building series of sound installations.

Playing the building is a sound installation in which the infrastructure, the physical plant of the building, is converted into a giant musical instrument. Devices are attached to the building structure — to the metal beams and pillars, the heating pipes, the water pipes — and are used to make these things produce sound. The activations are of three types: wind, vibration, striking. The devices do not produce sound themselves, but they cause the building elements to vibrate, resonate and oscillate so that the building itself becomes a very large musical instrument.

Playing the Building

The installation is located at 10 South Street in Manhattan and runs through August 8th, open Friday-Sunday, noon – 6pm (admission is free).

photo via David Byrne