DIN 1317-1: Absorbing Borders, Sound + Installation + Performance

Maria Wildeis
DIN 1317-1: Absorbing Borders

Sound + Installation + Performance
01 June 2022 at
Cité internationale des arts, 75004 Paris

In a letter of 6 October 1858 to his lover Mathilde Wesendonck, Richard Wagner expresses his enthusiasm for the Érard pianos: “But this wonderfully soft, melan- cholically sweet instrument completely cajoled me back to music. I called it the swan that had now come to lead poor Lohengrin home again!”

The central starting point of my artistic research is a Erard’s grand piano, which I was working with during my research at Cité internationale des arts Paris. I composed a sound piece with recordings of each note as fixed media in Max MSP and generated randomized rhyhtm patterns. I thus added sine waves of different length and frequencies to create site specific rhythm patterns through overlapping sine wave curves in the stereo field.

Camille Érard, Pierre Érard’s widow, gave Wagner a grand piano after his stay in Paris. He composed the first act and the libretto in Zurich. He decided to compose the second act in the “solitude of Venice and had his Érard grand piano transported over the Alps”. He wrote the third act in Switzerland, in the noble Lucerne hotel “Schweizerhof”. Wagner travelled with the grand piano not only to Venice but also to Biebrich, Vienna, Munich, Tribschen and Bayreuth.

Erard grand pianos were very popular and were thus moved around a lot in the style of European expansion. The European idea of colonising the world and making it serviceable left its mark in salty, rusty Érard pianos that were left behind. As early as the 18th century, the French manufacturer’s most popular pianos were export-
ed not only to Europe and America, but also to French colonies in Asia or South America.

The pianos transported not only their flattering sound to all parts of the world, but also the standard concert pitch negotiated in many European tuning conferences, which was finally fixed at A1 = 440 Hz at 20° Celsius. In 1920, the Treaty of Ver- sailles states: Article 282, paragraph 22. Convention of 16 and 19 November 1885, concerning the manufacture of a standard tuning fork; this was followed by the ISO standard and in 1957 by DIN 1317-1 (German Institute for Standardisation).

The artistic debate is accompanied by the presentation of two albino alligators, which are currently at home in the Palais de la Porte Dorée in Paris in the Aquari- um Tropical, in the basement of the building. The Art Deco building was opened in 1931 for the “Exposition coloniale internationale”. The sculptor Elizabeth Prophet called it “the most spectacular colonial display the West has ever seen”. Equally impressive is the presentation of these white beings, who come from the US state of Louisiana at the foot of the Mississippi, a former very early colony of France (17th century). They were taken out of their habitat to be observed separately as superla- tives of the Fremdenschau in an artificial environment.

In her work, Maria Wildeis deals with electronic music compositions and live performances. With the help of the medium of the soundscape, the linearity of the perception of time in humans and non-humans, as well as the spatial aspects of sound. Inspired by historical connotations of various objects and events, as well as the different sound events in nature and sensory abilities of some animals, the com- poser experiments with temporal and spatial factors through two- or multi-channel performances and installations.

Sources Research (selection):
– http://www.versailler-vertrag.de/vv10.htm
– https://richard-wagner-museum.ch/geschichte/fluegel-von-erard/
– https://opera-inside.com/tristan-und-isolde-von-richard-wagner-opernfuehrer-und-handlung/?lang=de
– http://archivobello.uchile.cl/thumb?img=content/registros/coleccion-eugenio-perei-ra-salas/037R/ugd_3389. jpg&size=900
– https://www.geo.fr/histoire/ancien-musee-des-colonies-retour-sur-la-naissance-et-le-destin-singulier-du-palais-de-la-porte-doree-a-paris-207187 – Wikipedia

Sources Film:
Concept, music + image: Maria Wildeis
Photogrammetry: Benoît Rogez Image
References: 2 postcards ‘Alligator mississippiensis’ © Déodat Manchon / EPPPD (Aquarium Tropical Paris)
Wagner: Tristan und Isolde WWV 90 – Prelude und Liebestod (Act III), France Musique
Die 432 Hz Verschwörung (+ Interaktiver Test), MULTI BE CAREFUL WHAT MUSIC YOU LISTEN TO!! 432HZ vs 440HZ, End Times Ultra
Animal Planet, Baby Albino Alligators Move To Their New Home | The Aquarium LimeWave, Louisiana Swamp
Alligators and Cypress with Spanish Moss at Lake Martin, Lafayette LA
Stillpoint X, Color White Light, Reflection & Absorption
Anne Müller, Geschäftsbrief nach DIN 5008 03/2020 in Microsoft Word https://academo.org/demos/ virtual-oscilloscope/