Forty part Moet, 2001
Janet Cardiff, like other artists in her generation, has chosen to work in a variety of media, including video, installation and recorded sound. Janet Cardiff and her husband George Bures Miller currently live and work in Berlin, Germany and often do art works together. Cardiff's "Forty Part Motet" won the National Gallery of Canada's Millennium Prize in 2001. This installation was a reworking of the renaissance choral music "Spem in Alium" by the English composer Thomas Tallis (1514 - 1585) the 40-part choir was designed to mark the 40th birthday of Queen Elizabeth I. The forty voices are grouped into eight choirs of five voices. Each voice was recorded separately and is played back through 40 separate single loudspeakers. This brilliant sound sculpture was positioned specifically throughout the space. . Janet Cardiff is one of Canada's most important artists. Her sound installations have been shown across Canadian places such as in the NGC’s Rideau Chapel, it’s originally showing at Newcastle and also in a large gymnasium at the Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre and around the world. Janet Cardiff said "Most people experience this piece now in their living rooms in front of only two speakers, even in a live concert the audience is separated from the individual voices. Only the performers are able to hear the person standing next to them singing a different harmony. I wanted to be able to climb inside the music." The work allows the audience to get inside the music and experience it almost tangibly as the voices weave in and out of each other. The visitors could listen to each of the voices one by one walking closer to the individual ‘people’- the speakers or to all of them together from the middle of the room. The 14 minutes piece was said to be very deeply moving to visitors, which earned a popularity that usually isn’t associated by contemporary art. Rebecca Travis (artist and writer) described the work as “a piece with huge...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document