On view at the Design Museum Holon through October 28, Sound and Matter in Design explores the multidimensional relationship between sound and design. Upon arrival, visitors are confronted with the exhibition's largest object, the Design Museum Holon iconic building designed by Ron Arad, which, already a "musical building" in its visual appearance, is itself transformed into a musical instrument.
Titled The Sound of Architecture, the site-specific installation curated by Anat Safran and Lila Chitayat exploits the building's architecture and the capacity of its hollow Corten ribbons to function as echo chambers to create an all-immersive "musical arena", where visitors become the composers. The sound is emanated from 100 speakers located in different areas, as well as from the building itself, compelling the viewers into the multi-sensory nature of the exhibition and inviting them to delve into their individual perception of sound.
"Sound is one of the most significant 'raw materials' in the designer's toolbox," commented Maya Dvash, Design Museum Holon's Chief Curator. Sound and Matter in Design spans across all the Museum premises, addressing the core theme through three different prisms - object, space and environment.
Inside the Museum, the Upper Gallery features Seeing Sound, an exhibition curated by Anat Safran, Lila Chitayat and Elisabetta Pisu, containing over 50 objects designed from the 1960s to the present. Divided into three categories - stationary, mobile, and interactive objects - the exhibition features historical pieces that recount the evolution of stereo systems and speakers, as well as contemporary pieces that constitute furnishing accessories for the living room. The pieces exemplify the conceptual shift from object design to the design of a user experience, whilst showcasing the way sound and design fit harmoniously into domestic environments.
Located in the Dr. Shulamit Katzman Gallery is Sensing Sound - an interactive installation created and curated by Anat Safran and Lila Chitayat in collaboration with eight sound artists. Designed as an open platform and transforming the gallery into a resonating chamber, the installation includes original sound works composed especially for this space, which are translated into visual representations influenced by the movement of the visitors. Vibrations are a key, instantly perceptible component of the installation, transporting visitors into a world where the movements of sound become visible and the visual and tangible character of sound becomes clear.
The 'Peripheral Corridor' of the Museum features a solo exhibition titled Through the Mesh curated by Yael Taragan of jewellery artist Dana Hakim Bercovich, who makes use of metal mesh (speaker grille) used in loudspeakers and audio equipment for the design and creation of unique jewellery pieces that can be worn on the body. These creations directly respond to the anxieties experienced by individuals in a global and digital world in which private spaces and even the body become arenas of surveillance. The pieces may also be perceived as performing the ancient symbolic function of protecting the wearer, or as implants in people's bodies: concealed transmitters revealing one's identity and physical location in a unique "big brother" scenario.
Featured in the Design Lab is Loops, an exhibition including selected items from the Museum collection that embody a set of principles that tie in and apply to both sound and design alike. Exemplified by the notion of repetition, a concept that is utilised and interpreted in both worlds, this exhibition aims to bridge the gap between these two seemingly divergent categories and reveal how conceptually close they are and can be.
Photography: Shay Ben Efraim