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Gary Hill:
Child’s Play, 2011

8-channel Soundwork
Duration: 8’30” (Loop)
Original text: Gary Hill
Voices: Clara Amanda Campman, Yamna Krasny, Hannah Scheucher, Yaron Schuh,
Yona Schuh, Caspar Quint White

Courtesy of Gary Hill and TONSPUR
for a public space, Vienna

A handful of children invisibly present, apart from the eight speakers installed in the space — modern day equivalents of grotesques, exchange rhetorical questions, colloquial word play and idiomatic expression, seemingly doing so in the spirit of banter. We can imagine the walkthrough the sound space as an initiation or ‘rite of passage’ concocted by the mischievous group. With the children’s voices coming from different directions, it becomes difficult to avoid the realization that one might be the subject of conversation. The passersby sense the desire to connect, perhaps even interrupt, lightly agitate, wake up or even enlighten their passing presence…or, will we simply be ships passing in the night? (Gary Hill)

Not a philosopher but one of the most brilliant, most influential and most beguiling ‘voices’ in the realm of contemporary art completed “TONSPUR 48 for a public space” and is not to be ‘heard’ himself. The American artist Gary Hill had 6 children between the ages of 7 and 12 speak his words, which he had written during his TONSPUR-­‐Artist-­‐in-­‐Residence in the MQ in Vienna. The montage of the recorded voices in the eight-­‐part manuscript for “Child’s Play” makes the installation space into a stage for words, voices and sounds, it transforms the space into an imaginary place of communication, supplementing it with a place of linguistic games and mind-­‐ play. It transforms the space into a place for thinking using (concealed) messages of ostensible importance and enigmatic significance. The alert passer-­‐by, flâneur, strayer is released into a state of hovering between this world and beyond by Gary Hill’s ‘playground’. No more and no less capable of generating impacting (also) without images, he is an exception among pictorial artists. (Georg Weckwerth)


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