Sound design for the performance-project Mechitza 7.1, Tobaron Waxman, ICI Kulturlabor Berlin, October 2010
Conceptual artist Tobaron Waxman presented a motion-activated sound installation. In Mechitza 7.1 sound and air were used to develop a conceptual architecture as a post-Zionist critique. Mechitza 7.1 reflected on the segregationist architecture that controls public and private space, imposed by the state.
With James Hurley as the composer I was asked to contribute to the sound design for this project. The work with Tobaron Waxman was itself a conceptual approach. He sent me packages with auditory and visual material which I was then asked to respond to in a way I thought would be appropriate. This concept left me working free and independently, yet providing a great deal of inspiration.
For Mechitza 7.1 field recordings were used that Waxman made in the occupied territories of Palestine, and in men’s prayer spaces from his Chassidic life in New York. An elision was made between sacred/taboo space, and ‘ethnically cleansed’ space, using interactive audio, as a way to interrogate the notion of border.
A mechitza is the separation architecture between women and men in a Jewish prayer space. ‘7.1’ is both a Jewish metatextual reference about nation and destiny as well as indicative of this piece being composed for surround sound with 7.1 channels.