Thursday, 14 February 2013

Harry Bertoia's Sound Sculptures

'Sonambients are friendly aliens.' - Val Bertoia

Harry Bertoia not only patented the Diamond Chair for Knoll International in 1952 (pic below), but in the early 70s designed sound sculptures with his son, Val. They called the sound Sonambient. Where Jean Tinguely's sculptures sound like machines at work and play, Bertoia's elegant designs are reflected in the sounds resonating from them. 'Alien', deep, yet easy to listen to, these recordings are astounding, Zen-like meditations on sound reverberation and more worthwhile than a million 'ambient' albums.

Interview with Val Bertoia here.

Eleven of the LPs can be grabbed here at UbuWeb

1 comment:

  1. Love these things, and his work in this area hasn't been documented as extensively as it could be.

    When I lived in Chicago I worked a corporate job for a publishing company downtown. I soon discovered that in there was a Bertoia sound sculpture (similar to the one in the first video) by the fountain in the plaza of the adjacent office tower. Good place to go and have lunch when seasonal, lying back on the marble bench beneath the thing to soak up some sun, listening to the thing making its sounds overhead in the breeze, the vibrations from its activity traveling through the marble underneath. Very therapeutic, that.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...