Re-sounding Unit 6, Row G in 8 movements, 2016

– 8 channel audio installation.

Exhibited in Instruments of Industry Touchstones Art Gallery, Rochdale. 25th March – 11th June 2016.

The tools on the shelves hold a latent memory of an action, the resonating sounds created in the molding, measuring, bending and shaping of process and a material. Using over 500 individual sounds and frequencies captured from ‘ringing’ the Museums collection of hand tools, the audio installation is composed as a series of eight movements which directly relate to the placement of the tools upon the shelves in the archive. The piece is a re-sounding of the tools, a transmission which explores resonance as a way of touching and conversing. Each of the 8 movements play at one time, generating, shifting placement and position during the course of the exhibition.

The works and exhibition, Instruments of Industry, approaches the tool as an extension of ourselves; our contact, relationship to and being in the world. It draws on the connection between the Museum’s collection of trade tools and their resting place, Thomas Robinson and Son’s, a former engineering works which now houses the archive. These prehensile tools have been elevated to museum objects and represent our pre-industrial relationship to work. Disembodied from the hands and minds that worked them, they are no longer ‘present at hand’ and remain at a distance, carefully preserved as an object of esthetic and historic value.

The work was created over a 12 month residency in Touchstones Museums’ archive and  funded through a New Opportunities Award by New Expressions 3, in partnership with Visual Arts South West, Arts Council England and Touchstones Rochdale.

Images: Simon Liddiard.


Corridor 8 – ‘A Chorus of Objects’ – by Laura Mansfield
Artist Newsletter Reviews, ‘Instruments of Industry’ – Interview by Jack Welsh