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LAXART Gala at Greystone Mansion

‘Til you drop: An installation of image, color, sound, and movement

by Thomas Lawson, Nina Waisman, Flora Wiegmann

Performers: Flora Wiegmann, Jos McKain, Allison Wyper

Working loosely with the idea of a public celebration or carnival, the work addresses the fun, the excess, and the aftermath of the party - experiential research for an era often compared to the roaring 20’s. A group of vertical structures or banners is arranged to create the hint of a maze like space within the confines of the room. On some surfaces these structures present a blank color, shimmering, iridescent, almost reflective. Across others float life size images of ghostly pierrot figures and dissolute partygoers – the enablers and the enabled. Throughout this space hang suspended sensors, which trigger sound when approached.

Sound content for the party themes will be drawn from historic archives, movies made on site, and contemporary re-performance of events. These will be offset by sounds of everyday life at the mansion, including some connected quietly to its less savory past, with an ear to locating sonic and gestural relationships that continue to shape the mansion's (and its celebrants’) personas. Sounds are  both triggered and modulated by visitors motions, setting up a gestural and sonic dialogue between contemporary behaviors and those from the mansions displaced past. When no one is in the room, it is silent.
At specific times throughout the evening, three dancers will perform in the space, interacting with the sensors/sound as musical instrument and the banners as set. Multiple elements will be considered in the choreographic strategy: movement that stems from theme of celebration (and when it gets out of control), "playing the sensors” and modulation of the sounds through dancing bodies, and relating with the image structures as they can both accentuate and obstruct the view of the bodies.

In between our scheduled performances, LAXART partygoers can create their own interactive sound experiences simply by moving through the installation. Sounds triggered as they wander will draw from parties given over the years at Greystone: parties given officially in the house, and pop-up parties thrown by those who broke into the house in years it was abandoned. 

Later Event: October 3
Sibling Rivers @ M:ST 7