Artist Meghan Trainor spent a bunch of last year with electrodes stuck to her head. These electrodes were creating an electroencephalogram, recording her brain patterns as she read poetry (Rudyard Kipling’s The Secret of the Machines) and listened to music (Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No 5). She ended up with hours of recordings of what her brain looked like on poetry and music.
When she wasn’t reading poetry and recording her brain, she was building mechanical devices that, based on electrical inputs, could open or close apertures, or spin dials, or lift and release sections of netting… I think you see where we’re headed.
Combining the two projects (they were never really separate) she uses the brainwave recordings as a control track to drive her kinetic sculptures, and the audience sees these objects opening, closing, lifting, dropping, turning, and spinning in response to the electroencephalogram. We are seeing robotic “bodies” respond to the way the artist felt (felt here with all of its emotional connotations) while reading and listening to music.
They do so in the cold, raw setting of 411 South Maynard Street, an unfinished storefront in Chinatown, a contextual reminder of the meeting of the harsh coldness of the constructed environment and the emotional warmth of these two works of poetry and music.