'Bird’s-Eye-View of the Mississippi River from the Mouth of the Missouri to the Gulf of Mexico 1884 '. 88-note player piano roll (paper, perforated), edition of 6, 2016
A map of the Mississippi River basin is transposed, to scale, into a musical roll for Player Piano. This work maps the height of the second industrial revolution in the USA at a time when global trade networks were accelerating rapidly in volume and speed. 1884 also maps a time when player piano technology was first being developed as an early form of musical reproduction. Early maps conditioned the course of the Mississippi by rendering it navigable, whilst the river continues to test the map by eroding its boundaries at a rate which supersedes the logic of a mass-produced imaging.
The player piano itself mirrors technologies that move humans and resources down rivers: the instrument’s own anatomy resembles steam boat mechanics (wind chest, pneumatic stack, exhauster, reservoir, valves, etc) whilst the physical process of playing the roll relates directly to the human body, as with rowing, repetitive muscular lunges; rhythm, speed and style.
link to Itasca write up in Artforum
copies of the edition available, email email@example.com for more information