I first came across the work of swiss artist Zimoun back in 2009 when he and fellow swiss artist Pe Lang were collaborating on the series of work, Untitled Sound Objects. I was immediately drawn to their mesmerizing and compelling kinetic sound sculptures and compositions that are at once controlled yet chaotic, playful yet distant, small yet all encompassing.
Using commonplace low-tech objects like cardboard boxes, dc motors, wire, and cotton balls, the artist transforms them into highly ordered and mathematical systems of movement, whose timing and contours are often determined site-specifically. Elements of gravity, resistance, chance and repetition come into motion.
Zimoun often multiplies one seeming simple ‘module’ or mechanical element to incredible effect, creating amplified sonic and spatial environments that exude presence.
Over the years, I’ve kept both artists on my radar, although only able to see their works in an online context. I was thrilled to discover that this month, Zimoun has not one, but three concurrent solo exhibitions in New York. Titled [KE] 3—its name derived from “KE”, a notation found in physics equations describing kinetic energy—the works are uniquely created and adapted to each location and context.
We managed to hit up his exhibitions at bitforms gallery and the Knockdown Center in Queens. The show at bitforms feature smaller, individual pieces that were playful and humorous. His show at the Knockdown Center is a must-see if you can manage to get out to Maspeth. Responding to the immense space that was once a glass factory, the artist suspended 250 motorized wood beams attached to ropes on cyclical pulleys from the ceilings which strike the floor at varying intervals like a disordered orchestra. The loud, reverberating sounds created an incredible, immersive sonic environment—one in which you should just let go and get lost in the moment.
Zimoun [KE] 3 Exhibition Dates:
Feb 8 – Mar 15, 2015
Feb 7 – Mar 8, 2015
Simons Gallery for Geometry and Physics at the Stony Brook University
Feb 5 – Apr 9, 2015