Words Drawn in Water


Words Drawn in Water


Audio walk

33 minutes

Curated by Kelly Gordon and Olga Viso for Directions

Janet Cardiff

For this audio walk I took the audience on a tour around the area of the Mall in Washington. After starting the piece looking at the fountain of the Hirshorn Museum they wandered through the sculpture garden, along the Mall and ended in the Peacock Room (by Whistler) at the Freer Gallery. In my research I noticed that there were fountains all over the area with underwater grids supporting them. I decided to use water as a metaphor for the fluidity of time and for connecting political ideas and people. Another interest for me in Washington became the prevalence of political illusion and working with that metaphorically. Just as a piece of mirror found on the sidewalk becomes a chunk of sky, the varying soundscapes, such as an audience clapping around you, a car passing, or a band playing, make you question the truth of anything you hear.

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Thyssen_Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Vienna in collaboration with Public Art Fund, New York