Neil Roberts

Grishin, Sasha,

"Interactive Sound Meditation"

Canberra Times, Review, 8 May 2000. pp. 14

Sasha Grishin

Again and again, Neil Roberts and Kimmo Vennonen, CCAS, the Cube, Gorman House, Braddon. Until June 3.

If we admit to the existence of “mood music” and to something called “mood art”, when there is a collaboration between an artist and a musician, we may experience a “mood installation”.

Kimmo Vennonen is described as a sound artist and I must confess I am unfamiliar with her work.

She has provided the “sound track” for this installation, while Neil Roberts, on of Canberra’s public sculptors and glass artists, has created a quite intriguing sound-interactive screen of vibrating ping pong balls.

The artists’ media release can probably be taken as a fair statement of their intent.

They write: “Speed slowed to the point of stillness, ping pong balls hovering in light, sound moves around the Cube at a similar slowness. The rhythm of the space and the bodies in it may pause for a moment or slowly breathe in and out.”

I suppose this is what some people would call synchronicity of sound and shape.

The work belongs less in the tradition of the sound and image collaboration of artists such as Wassily Kandinsky and Arnold Schoenberg, than the sound-art phenomena of the 1970s with artists including Brian Eno, Doug Hollis and Chris Apology.

The collaborative installation Again and Again was quite a therapeutically relaxing experience, although the somewhat clinical atmosphere of the Cube was a spot unsympathetic, at least for this viewer, to induce a state of deep meditation.