The Contemporary Arts Center hosts a conversation about Dithyrambalina, New Orleans Airlift's ongoing musical architecture project. Building off the great success of The Music Box, Project leaders Swoon, Delaney Martin, and Taylor Lee Shepard will discuss what is coming next for this evolving endeavor. The moderator for the evening is Tori Bush, Operations Manager of New Orleans Airlift & Dithyrambalina.
Dithyrambalina: Musical Architecture in New Orleans: A host of international artists, musicians and inventors are creating Dithyrambalina – a landmark village of musical, playable houses. Invented instruments embedded into the walls, ceilings, and floors of Dithyrambalina’s architecture will support boundary-breaking musical performances and inspire wonder, exploration and invention in visitors of all ages. This New Orleans Airlift project is the evolving brainchild of artists Swoon, Delaney Martin, and Taylor Lee Shepherd in collaboration with over 100 more artists and musicians to date. Last year they debuted THE MUSIC BOX, as a proof-of-concept for their vision.
To learn more visit www.dithyrambalina.com
The Team: New Orleans Airlift & Dithyrambalina
Delaney Martin—Artistic Director of Dithyrambalina and Co-founder of New Orleans Airlift
Delaney Martin has shown large-scale installations internationally for over a decade. Her work frequently engages with the historical and cultural specificity of a site to create spectacular, immersive environments.
Her work is also marked by frequent collaborations with fellow artists as well as musicians and performers.
Delaney has lived, studied and worked in New York, New Orleans, Los Angeles, and London over the past decade. In 2008 she founded the arts organization New Orleans Airlift with Jay Pennington out of a desire to give back and go back to New Orleans post-Katrina. She has since been honing the meaning of her art practice in relation to Airlift’s increasingly ambitious projects. This rewarding experience has led to an even deeper commitment to the power of collaboration.
Delaney conceived and led The Music Box experience. She continues to oversee the creative development of Dithyrambalina.
SWOON—Lead Visual Artist
Swoon is a Brooklyn-based street artist who creates life-sized portraits of people she meets, using woodcut block prints and paper cutouts. Swoon’s galleries are city walls, often in the environments that inspired the prints. With influences ranging from German Expressionist wood block prints to Indonesian shadow puppets, Swoon is a master of using cut paper to play with positive and negative space in a conceptually driven exploration of street environments.
For the past three years, she has also designed, built, and organized fleets of rafts including those of the Miss Rockaway Armada and the Swimming Cities of Switchback Sea, a large-scale installation at Deitch Projects in New York City. Her most recent boat project traversed the Adriatic Sea and the canals of Venice, Italy during the 2009 Biennale. Swoon’s boats are inspired by dense urban cityscapes and thickly intertwined mangrove swamps from her Florida youth.
She is an international artist with major pieces in the Museum of Modern Art, PS1’s groundbreaking exhibition GREATER NEW YORK, and Brooklyn Museum of Art. Swoon has been traveling for the past several years creating exhibitions and workshops in the United States and Europe.
Taylor Lee Shepherd—Lead Sound Artist
Taylor is a local artist and builder of mechanical wonders who has contributed to the shape of the Dithyrambalina from it’s inception. He joined Swoon and New Orleans Airlift’s very early collaborative meetings around building a musical house and has advised and influenced the process and the realization of the project. Taylor was Civil Engineer of The Music Box village, responsible for all of our electrical lines, general sound design and for making sure everything worked throughout the run of the installation. Taylor also built the very popular Music Box instrument called Vox Murum. He will continue to be our lead sound artist for Dithyrambalina.
Taylor likes to make things move in old fashioned ways. He often uses rotating cams, an 11th century invention, but he is also really fond of tape recorders. He has been known to make drawing machines, electronic doorknockers, dancing light machines and other irreverent moving objects. He has shown at numerous New Orleans galleries including Barristers, XO Gallery, The Candle Factory, and L’art Noir. He has also shown at Gallery T (Denver) and Bereznitzky Gallery (Berlin). His work was included in the wildly popular Sequence of Waves show organized by the Rabid Hands Collective at St. Cecilia’s Church in Brooklyn, and The Museum of Curioisty in London with Black Rat Press. Taylor was also recently included in the Technological Terrarium exhibition at The Ogden Museum of Southern Art and The Music Box Outpost at Art Arsenale, Kiev, Ukraine.
Tori Bush—Operations Manager
Tori Bush is an arts administrator, writer, maker and explorer. Tori has an M.A. in Arts Administration and was previously the Programs Director for the Creative Alliance of New Orleans. A contributing writer for Pelican Bomb, Daily Serving, Artvoices and editor for Catalogue, Tori was a finalist in the Creative Capital/Arts Writer’s grant this year. She believes New Orleans may be the last habitable city in the U.S.