Geoffrey Farmer at Kunstverein in Hamburg
Let’s Make the Water Turn Black
March 1–May 11, 2014
Opening: Friday, February 28, 7pm
Kunstverein in Hamburg
The mechanical play Let’s Make The Water Turn Black, which is inspired by Farmer’s interest in Kabuki theatre, is populated with sculptures, some of which are kinetic, who perform the various acts in an ever-shifting computer generated score of lights and sound that play out over the course of the day. Using the life of Frank Zappa as a structuring devise, the work progresses chronologically from 1940 to 1993, and employs various methodologies that have influenced Farmer; William Burroughs’ use of the “cut-up,” Kathy Acker’s employment of pastiche and Zappa’s own editing technique, Xenochrony, or strange time. The effect of this is kaleidoscopic, and allows the work to touch on disparate subjects, from Edgard Varèse to the L.A. Riots; from Pachuco music to nose picking. Algorithms and the ability for the score to improvise, makes experiencing the piece each day unique and unpredictable.