Saturday, March 31, 2018

Variations by Céleste Boursier-Mougenot

Last weekend, the wife and I visited the ceramics museum Princessehof in Leeuwarden. Aside from the very impressive regular collection, the special ceramic arts exhibition In Motion drew our attention. Many fascinating pieces (a condensed overview in Dutch can be found here), but the star of the show for me was the installation Variations by French artist Céleste Boursier-Mougenot. He started his career as a composer, and in many of his works the element of music is still playing a key role. Variations consists of three circular pools of flowing water in which dozens of ceramic bowls of various sizes float. Every random collision of two bowls produces a tone - the sound of which depends on the size of the bowls involved. The result is an unpredictable sequence of notes, which has a distinct zen like character. A sample can be seen and heard in this video (not mine). More about the artist in the linked Wikipedia article.

Copyright statement: image copyrighted by Ruben van Vliet, used with explicit permission from the Museum.