Berlin, Germany
3 channel site specific sound installation
Bundesallee, 2018

collaboration with Kayla Elrod

The direct transition between U3 and U9 at U Spichernstraße is closed due to elevator installation from summer 2018 until May 2020. Due to this construction, people are rerouted to the designated pathway aboveground along Bundesallee. We have placed our reconstructed BVG directional pillar along this route to provide pedestrians with an opportunity to rethink the possibilities of a detour.

Three speakers construct a sonic collage, reworking the nearby soundscape. The outer speaker emits a sonic map of the detour with announcements cycling through, while the two inner speakers expand the imagination of the U-Bahn soundscape, combining site-specific field recordings, droning voices, and meditative singing bowls.

Every day when I walk past one of the entrances at Spichernstraße station, I see people looking around to find the way to transfer. It reminds me how people can quickly develop a mechanical routine in their daily life. We might have been commuting at the same station for the past ten years but still neglecting the environment. We collected field recordings around and in the station and made a soundscape composition. Visually it inherits the bvg directional pillar, which is well camouflaged to the street view. With this installation in the public space, we wanted to create a twisted experience in peoples everyday life.

Detour is often seen as an adverse incident. But sometimes, it does bring a mind-changing surprise to the mundane landscape.

Video © Kayla Elrod