Colony Sound | A Multi-Room Installation at Marlborough Gallery
Colony Sound is a multi-room installation by Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe, spanning across both floors of the Marlborough London Gallery. The installation presents a resort of various different realities that are interconnected through a telecommunication system. This system is calledThe Smile, a fictional “communication system built from a flowering bacterial colony,” which was repurposed by the immigrant population of the colony. It is all immersed within Freeman and Lowe’s San San Universe, a dystopian world in which burgeoning cultures are transfiguring the world around them.
A unique take on the traditional white cube installation technique, each room is molded into presenting a story from which the art naturally arises. There are eleven rooms in total to immerse ourselves with, and each has its own story to tell. Among them one can find a half-incinerated recording studio, a telecommunications retail outlet, and a copper room used to shield from electromagnetic waves. This method of art installation is incredibly effective in immersing the viewer into its world. Each room gives the art within it a life and depth that is so unlike the stripping effects one receives within the white cube. The art melds into its surrounding space as if it sprung out from it, rather than becoming entrapped within it. In one room that resembles a medical examination room, one can see clusters of Caesium Halite taking over both the central desk, as well as the filing cabinets. In this space, the art takes over its habitat like a fungus. In other rooms, the art is similarly presented as the result of its surroundings, effectively absorbing the visitor’s countenance with its reality. Throughout the experience, original music by Elizabeth Hart and Ivàn Lee will accompany the visitor as they tread through this strange and exciting world. Rather than stripping it of context in order to render a “neutral” space for examining the art, here they meticulously bring the context in with the art, creating a world from which the art naturally arises.
Freeman and Lowe’s multi-room installation portrays a dystopian sci-fi universe within which one can find rooms that are both real and surreal, swiftly blending together a vivid imagination full of fantastical elements that will easily leave its viewers entranced.
Colony Sound is on view at Marlborough in London through October 19.