There is a prominent piece at the entrance to the SOUND exhibit that did not find its way into my last post. The Sew Organ involved a collection of vintage sewing machines, each attached to a resonator which might be an organ, a cello, or an old radio. The pedals of the sewing machines were stretched out into one long row, and were there for the playing. Each machine has its own special sound, which is brought out further by the resonator that Duane Brant chose for it. When there was no one else around, it was great to try controlling the speed, and to listen for differences between the speeds and resonances of each machine. When several people got playing them, the sound was tremendous. On a quieter day, I asked the guard which was his favorite, and he immediately pointed to the tallest one (you can see it in the picture). It was not the loudest, but it had an overpowering sound.
Every so often when I’m traveling I so much wish I could teleport a friend to see or hear some particular thing. In this case I would have brought Constanze over from Munich. She is quite taken with sewing machines of all vintages and has a wonderful fiber arts blog. Here’s one of my favorite projects of hers: