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The art of sound

Avant-garde artist Gordon Monahan will be delivering a sound performance live at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery on Friday May 6.

The Gallery’s event series First Fridays is intended to attract experimental music and art fans. As part of a retrospective tour across Southern Ontario demonstrating his 33 year career, the RMG will exhibit Gordon Monahan: Seeing Sound – Sound Art, Performance and Music 1978 – 2011 until June 12.

Gordon Monahan, Long Aeolian Piano (1984-86) by Thaddeus Holownia

The Gallery is exhibiting two of Monahan’s installations: Music From Nowhere, a speaker cabinet that has been fitted with a customized water fountain to produce natural acoustic sounds. Monahan’s latest installation, A Piano Listening to Itself – Chopin Chord, is a piano which has long strings suspended from the wall running to the piano on the ground. The strings transmit audio recordings of note sequences derived from piano compositions by Polish composer Fryderyk Chopin.

“It’s a unique experience,” says Jacquie Severs, RMG’s manager of communications and social media, “There’s nothing else like this in Oshawa.”

This event will likely attract out-of-towners, benefiting downtown Oshawa businesses. Patrons can explore local shops, cafes, restaurants and other entertaining establishments that it has to offer. As for the local population, residents of Oshawa can witness an unusual audio experience that differs from the common Friday routine of bar bands. The evening will also include a separate performance of Toronto’s DJ Efsharp, a funk/hip-hop/reggae mixer, which will likely draw a younger crowd.

This is a social event that’s open to all ages. Admission is free, but the Gallery is accepting donations in support of War Child Canada.

Severs says this is the RMG’s last planned event of First Fridays since being introduced February, but hopes it will continue as a regular monthly occurrence in the future. Events like these are meant to entertain, while bringing culture to downtown Oshawa’s art and music scene.

Story by Matthew McPhee

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