Apollo 11 Rehearsal
- wood, carpet, drum part, chalk, extruded polystyrene foam, speakers, helium balloon, cassette tape recorder, radio transmitter
- dimensions variable
In 1969, a few months before the Apollo 11 mission, the astronauts are still training in NASA’s warehouse. Rehearsing their ballet on a blue carpet, where some stones are arranged in order to represent the lunar environment. NASA’s archival image was the starting point of this project, as I found it very interesting how the astronaut had to pretend to be in space where no one had been before, yet still with gravity enacting upon him.
In this work I wanted to change the paradigm of this situation, and create a story about this carpet, which became the matrix playground of this mission and could be spread out elsewhere. I reproduced this carpet and drew the outline of each stone in its exact placement. I then transposed it into a musical stage, which I consider as a pending space.
The cassette tape player attached to the helium balloon transmits a sound piece through short radiowave frequencies into two woofers.
This astronaut’s radio diary called L’ultra épaisseur du réel (The Ultra Thickness of the Real) in reference of Duchamp’s inframince, brings to mind the silent geological breathing folds that have existed around us since the Big Bang. One must consider that we are still living directly in the aftermath of a star explosion.
The cassette tape composition method is directly influenced by William Burrough’s Cut up technique. It reflects the geological aspect of an analogic device. The sound is recorded in the past and yet it is still materially present. On one tape I record multiple sounds and songs that I like, until this tape eventually becomes a text of my own, in and of itself.