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"Inaugural Exhibtion: S.O.S. - Scenes of Sounds"
2000-10-29 until 2001-01-28
Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Skidmore College
Saratoga Springs, NY, USA United States of America

Skidmore's Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery introduces the museum's opening exhibition, S.O.S.: Scenes of Sounds scheduled for presentation from October 2000 to January 2001. An exploration of sound through art, artifacts and contemporary culture,S.O.S. will give visitors a vivid sense of the kind of exhibitions we envision for the Tang - exhibitions that bring together seemingly disparate disciplines and extend the notion of the visual arts through innovative experiences.

Inventions such as the telephone, tape recorder, loudspeaker, radio, Walkman, compact disk, internet radio, and computer-synthesized speech have produced dramatic shifts in human communication. The resulting reconfigurations of acoustic space--of what we hear and how we hear it-have held increasing fascination for contemporary artists. So while for most critics the notion of sound (implied or actually heard) in the context of a visual artwork remains problematic, and while to the uninitiated sound is a particularly esoteric component of avant-garde practice, there is in fact a rich vein of art in which sound is either subject matter or primary element. It's with this theme in mind that we have chosen to open the Tang Museum with S.O.S: Scenes of Sounds. The exhibition will include a wide range of media: installations, sculpture, paintings, electronically-driven multimedia and interactive work, and photography. It will include works by well-known artists but special consideration will be given to emerging artists with limited exhibition records.

Supplementing the visual works in S.O.S. will be a library of audio art by such artists as Richard Artschwager, Bill Fontana, Alison Knowles, Sol LeWitt, Claus Oldenberg, Yoko Ono, Adrian Piper, and Wolf Vostell. This historical overview, organized by artist and media curator Stephen Vitiello, will also be broadcast daily on WSPN, Skidmore's student-run radio station, throughout the exhibition.

Consistent with the Tang's mission as an interdisciplinary teaching museum, S.O.S. will also feature exhibits that illuminate the science of sound. Adjunct programs will include a silent film series, a concert by a deaf choir and a wide range of special performances by artists. A listening station will play the 25 sounds for which the United States Patent Office has issued patents (for example, the roar of the MGM lion and the three chimes of the NBC television network).


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