Andrew Bird and Ian Schneller’s Sonic Arboretum


Installation view, Andrew Bird and Ian Schneller’s Sonic Arboretum, MCA Chicago, Dec 6–31, 2011 Photo: Nathan Keay, © MCA Chicago © MCA Chicago


A collection of horned speakers, made from compressed recycled newsprint and dryer lint, created by sculptor and instrument-maker Ian Schneller and composer/violinist Andrew Bird, are installed in the MCA’s atrium to create a unique sound garden. Bird records the initial compositions on-site at the MCA and sends musical information to different groups of horns via multiple loops. He layers and changes the compositions throughout the remainder of the installation off-site via computer technology.

On December 21 and 22, Bird performs in the space. These Sonic Events are not traditional concerts: Bird plays violin and manipulates the sounds while people move through the installation space. Tickets are required.