Telling (details)

Telling (The Humble Inquiry Series)

Telling examines the act of the conversation where the participants refuse to listen. In this work the voices speak over one another, not relaying information in terms of an empathic conversation but one of dissonance.

The work makes reference to Ed Schein’s book Humble Inquiry, an academic examination to the art of the conversation, in which the author examines various forms of conversation and how to build empathy through mindful listening. The Humble Inquiry series of works examines the art of the conversation sans utterance or without human voice. This series of my work examines conversation by the means of noise via experimental, improvised sounds or silence.

Telling incorporates two electric guitars played by tape loops that drag across the strings. The tape loops generate a constant drone while at the same time pluck the strings of the guitar as the splice holding the magnetic tape together moves across the strings. Each guitar has its own voice in the Telling conversation; the white guitar has one splice that plays the strings as the black guitar has multiple splices creating a denser response as the loop passes over the strings. Each tape loop is operated through an individual reel to reel tape player that is located behind the guitar painted to match its corresponding guitar. The sound is then heard through amplifiers for each guitar. The installation is displayed in the example shown, beside one another other (the example installation is displayed this way to allow for documentation and due to space limitations) but can be displayed in other arrangements such as across from each other or possibly from corners of a room to help demonstrate the confrontational nature of the Telling conversation. This constant noise brings forth Schein’s idea of the telling conversation where neither is listening to each other.