Beethoven for Relaxation

Gryphon Rue

Beethoven for Relaxation, soundtrack by Gryphon Rue, sculpture by Tom Smith. ROX Gallery, September 17-October 31 2013. Photos by Jenae Di Napoli.

Fragments of popular and original music were manipulated and collaged together to invoke atmospheres and associations cached in cultural memory, with the aim of shifting familiar sounds into new realms of perception. Transmissions from the past, detritus of the collective unconscious, a soundtrack to a party in an alien territory. “Beethoven for Relaxation” is a collaboration with visual artist Tom Smith.

Six Degrees of Degradation

Listen with headphones for optimum effect.

Recording pass #1

Recording pass #14

Recording pass #15


Improvisations on the singing handsaw were broadcasted into the Chapel of Holy Innocents at Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. Reverberations in the chapel interior were captured in successive recordings of each broadcast. This procedure was repeated 25 times, documenting the accumulating reverberation and diffusion of primary frequencies. Loudspeakers stationed throughout the chapel during the installation represented time-marks of the recording process: as one moved from the vestibule through the pews of the chapel, the number of repetitions of the recording of the saw increased, escalating into feedback in the sixth and final chamber of the chapel basement. As dusk fell, the ominous sounds transmitted a coaxing aura to passers-by.

Odetta and Gryphon

Odetta Gryphon 2

Odetta Gryphon 1