The Fondazione Prada investigates the history of peculiar musical instruments and the relationship between the visual and the aural in its latest exhibition in Venice, Art or Sound, curated by the art historian and inventor of Arte Povera, Germano Celant.
Organized chronologically, Art or Sound begins with musical instruments made from unusual and precious materials in the 17th century. It continues with 19th-century examples of automated instruments and avant-garde experiments, such as 1913’s Intonarumori by Luigi Russolo, the Futurist artist, composer, and author of The Art of Noises manifesto.
Also exhibited are works by composers Alvin Lucier and John Cage, sound boxes of 60s artists Robert Morris and Nam June Paik, kinetic sculptures by Takis and Stephan von Huene, and sound installations including Robert Rauschenberg’s Oracle (1962-65) and Laurie Anderson’s Handphone Table (1978). There are also Arman’s motorcycle pianos and other hybrid instruments by the likes of Richard Artschwager and Joseph Beuys.
Art or Sound, June 7 – November 3, 2014, Fondazione Prada, Santa Croce 2215, Venice