Recently the Electronic Music Foundation set New York City waterways to music. The group of artists held a concert at the White Box gallery on Broome Street in Manhattan.
One of the artists, Aleksei Stevens, wrote and performed a piece mapping the sounds of the Gowanus Canal titled “Standing Water: Sound Map of the Gowanus Canal 2010.”
The 18-minute work has six movements, each part named after a different location along the canal. Movements include: Hornbeck Offshore Transportation, Hamilton Avenue Drawbridge, and Leaking Fire Hydrant at Degraw Street.
“The Gowanus is famous, or infamous, for the condition it’s in,” Aleksei Stevens told the New York Times in an interview. He stated that his music was an attempt to “try to remove the visual from that and just listen to it and see if it sheds any light.”
Stevens may have hit upon the canal’s greatest sensory contribution. Without the sight and smell of the polluted waterway, the Gowanus becomes almost mystical and restorative.
For more information on the project, visit the links below: