Collection

FIRST SOUNDS FIRST 500,000 YEARS IN THE AGE OF THE UNIVERSE Key of C 55hz

Casey Tang, Casey Tang
Publication Date: 2014
Artwork type: Editioned book
Medium: -
Dimensions: 70.0 ft W x 11.0 in H
Binding Type: custom box, other
Edition Size: 10
Price: USD 3800.00
Contributors
Casey Tang (artist)
Casey Tang (artist)
Origin
Brooklyn, NY
Description

With "First Sounds," rising art star Casey Tang has created an elegant editioned art object that is the vehicle for his profoundly comprehensive conceptual artworks.

Tang created “First Sounds” in collaboration with astronomer Mark Whittle, who used computer calculations to recreate the fundamental tone and higher harmonics of the sound of the early universe. Whittle translated these sounds into the human range of hearing by upping the frequency by fifty octaves, allowing listeners to hear the universe taking shape––from the fizz of embryonic stars to the mid-range tones of developing galaxies. Far from a “big bang,” Whittle writes, the early universe sounded like a “descending scream." 

Tang converted this harmonic data into a working player-piano scroll. This enigmatic score is seductive in its simplicity: a long white scroll of parchment paper punched with a series of tiny perforations densely clustered and then climbing upwards, spreading further and further apart in a smooth rising arc, then cascading. Representing the sounds of the early universe, the score is an act of radical translation, rendering elegant and knowable the first million years of cosmic history, the noise made by primordial pres-sure waves coursing through hot gas. It gives form to a sensuous phenomenon almost beyond the limits of our comprehension: the beginning of the universe. 

Text from a larger essay by Anya Ventura, Arts Research Writer, MIT’s Center for Art, Science & Technology. 

 
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Institutional Collectors
Stanford University
Grinnell College
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