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Revolutions Per Minute revs up: Chinese sound art exhibition to spend a month at Colgate

By Barbara Brooks on March 21, 2013
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Revolutions Per Minute will be on view at Colgate from March 26 to April 26.

Weatherproof speakers, iPads and iPods, video projectors and monitors, headphones, a telescope, and 64 chanting machines are among the equipment being set up on campus and in the village of Hamilton, as artists and technicians prepare for Revolutions Per Minute (RPM), the first survey exhibition of Chinese sound art to be shown inside or outside of China.

The exhibition opens March 26 and runs through April 26. A story about RPM ran March 1 in the New York Times.

A total of 35 sound installations will be mounted in locations including Little Hall, the James B. Colgate lobby, Persson Hall entrance, the Dana Arts Center, the tunnel between Olin Hall and Love Auditorium, the empty Crowe’s drug store building on Utica Street, and in the gazebo on the village green. The works were all created by emerging and internationally renowned Chinese sound artists. The RPM map and brochure lists events and locations.

The opening reception will be held in Little Hall on March 26 at 4:30, with remarks by Dajuin Yao. On March 27, there will be a performance in the Hall of Presidents at 7 p.m.

Two special performances are scheduled for March 28 at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. in the Ho Tung Visualization Lab. With its 360-degree video projection and seven-channel surround sound, the facility is ideal, according to Wenhua Shi, assistant professor of art and art history, who co-curated the exhibition with sound artist Dajuin Yao.

“The Vis Lab will transform our senses, both cosmically and on a micro level,” said Shi. “The artists will interweave a multi-channel audio visual fabric to push the capacity of eight computers simultaneously.”

Also from March 26 to 29, four of the 30 artists whose work is featured will be in residence at Colgate, to work with students in Video Art I and Art 100 and others.

Wang Changcun, Xu Cheng (a member of the renowned Shanghai noise group Torturing Nurse), Samson Young, Qu Qianwen, and Xie Zhongqi will join co-curators Shi and Yao to present live sound art performances, including improvisations, inter-media performances, circuit bending, and do-it-yourself workshops.

More information and exhibition materials are on the exhibition website. A two-disk CD featuring works included in the exhibition will be offered for sale.

Revolutions per Minute is funded in part by the Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation Artist-in-Residence endowment at Colgate, with additional support from the Colgate Arts Council, the Department of Art and Art History, and the Film and Media Studies program.

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