Fono Balono (2010)
Conceived by You Nakai , Ai Chinen, and Earle Lipski
Premiere: 3 July 2010, Group Exhibition "Weather and Lifetime," Asahi Art Square, Tokyo
Performed by You Nakai
:: Seven or more clusters of 50 to 60 helium balloons (assorted colors), each carrying a portable radio.
:: All the balloons are released right before the start of the exhibition, and should land near its closing time (falling onto other pieces in the exhibition).
:: The size of balloons is determined by their ‘life-time’ which should correspond to the length of the exhibition.
:: The number of balloons is determined by the weight of each radio.
:: The number of clusters is determined according by the size of the exhibition space.
:: The balloon clusters are themselves organized into two or three groups.
:: All radios in the same group is set to the same frequency.
:: A wireless microphone is attached to one of the balloons in each group.
:: The number of groups is determined by the size of the exhibition space.
:: One narrator carrying a wireless microphone.
:: During the exhibition s/he talks to as many audiences as possible. The narrator improvises: (a) descriptions of ‘collaboration pieces’ which verbally connects two or more otherwise non-related pieces in the exhibition, and/or, (b) description of a ‘ghost piece’ which verbally constructs an otherwise non-existent piece within the exhibition. Descriptions should preferably contradict each other, and vary every time.
GHOST PIECE EXAMPLE
A piece performed inside the elevator. A blindfolded dancer is dancing, and the audience is forced to move, dodging her. Because all public activities inside the elevator are prohibited for security reasons, this is a guerrilla performance. The piece continues outside of the elevator, where the dancer constantly tries to maintain a fixed distance from a given audience member. As a result, the dancer is always out of sight. In other words: inside the elevator the audience is forced to run away from the dance; outside, the dance runs away from the audience. In either case, movement is created by disrupting the usually presupposed, 'adequate' distance for appreciating a performance.
SYSTEM A + B
:: Whatever the narrator says along with whatever responses from the audience is picked up by the wireless microphone, delayed for (a) 20 minutes, and (b) 40 minutes, and sent respectively to each balloon group (if more than two groups, add necessary number of delay times). The narrator's description of some time past is thus played aloud on a floating PA system.
:: The sound coming out of one radio is picked up again by the wireless microphone attached to another balloon cluster in the same group, and sent to the same delay system connected to the narrator's microphone before being sent to another radio. As a result, a constant recycling phenomenon ensues, whereby the initial sound is looped over an extended period of time, gradually deteriorating its quality and filling the environment with noise.
:: When more than half of the balloon groups touch ground, all delay times should be synchronized.
Tokyo, 23 June - 3 July, 2010