The Language of Things is a thematic group exhibition at City Hall Park, NYC, that explores the nature of language and communications extending beyond spoken and written word.
The exhibition features field recorder Chris Watson’s Ring Angels, a multichannel sound installation, using four Bowers & Wilkins AM-1 speakers, that will be exhibited for the first time at full length.
Ring Angels features the murmuration made by flocking starlings in the United Kingdom at sunset, and the work calls attention to the unknown matrix of information and signals that move rapidly through the flock and enable the fluidity of the starlings’ flight patterns.
As Watson explains, the work is not only concerned with the language of a natural phenomenon, but also human coded communications:
“The strange concentric patterns which appeared on early RADAR screens during the late 1940s were called ‘Ring Angels’ by the military as the objects were never discovered by the aircrafts which scrambled to the locations. The patterns were in fact large gatherings of starlings, birds which were introduced to North America in 1890, released in Central Park by a small group of European Shakespearian enthusiasts.”
Ring Angels is the first sound installation in City Hall Park and will be diffused through a series of Bowers & Wilkins AM-1 speakers to present the rhythms, timbres and language within a starling roost, sounds recorded from the perspective of the birds in a world we live alongside yet can never experience.”
The Language of Things runs is situated in City Hall Park and runs from June 29 – September 29 2016