CORRECTION- Airbag on the Bus Terminal P.A. As Art?

by Dylan on June 6, 2004

The Scotsman has an interesting article on artist Susan Philipsz, who does installation art, featuring Radiohead. An excerpt…
The voice of Susan Philipsz comes singing down the telephone line from Berlin, clear, untrained, rather melancholy and as if she?s singing to herself, but with a sense of purpose. It has a muting effect. The song ends, and there?s a click of a mouse on a computer. “Did you get that?” asks Philipsz. “I held the mobile up to the computer speakers. I?m not very technical”.
The song is just one of many sound installations that Glasgow-born, Berlin-based Philipsz has created in the past decade since graduating with an MA in Fine Art from the University of Ulster.
Her lonely, detached songs won her a nomination for the Beck?s Futures Prize this year, and feature in its exhibition, which hits Glasgow this week after being shown at London?s Institute of Contemporary Arts. Philipsz didn?t win the prize, but received a share of the ?20,000 pot.
Her work is about temporarily altering listener?s perceptions. It?s what makes her an artist rather than a singer. Much of her work has involved hijacking public address systems, the first example of which was at Laganside Bus Station in Belfast in November 1998. The installation, called Filter, consisted of a recording of Philipsz singing, unaccompanied, ?Airbag? by Radiohead, ?Who Loves The Sun? by The Velvet Underground, ?Jesus Doesn?t Want Me For A Sunbeam? by Nirvana and ?As Tears Go By? by The Rolling Stones.
“I chose those songs for their themes of longing and escapism,” she says, “because bus stations are normally places where you?re waiting to be some place else. I was interested in that psychological state.”
You can read the entire article here. Sounds interesting.
CORRECTION- It’s not really our mistake, but a mistake nonetheless…Nirvana did not write ‘Jesus Don’t Want Me For a Sunbeam’, the Vaselines did. Adam and Brad wanted you to know that, and dammit, they’re right.



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