News Column

Sound artist Scanner bridges gap at Museum of London Docklands show

June 20, 2014

Maev Kennedy,

A sound installation, commissioned from the composer and artist Scanner and collecting voices from all over the world reciting the names of bridges, will be installed in the Museum of London in Docklands to celebrate an exhibition on the history and art of the capital's bridges.

Scanner is the stage name of Londoner Robin Rimbaud, taken from his early work incorporating snippets of radio and phone signals captured through a scanner. He has worked with musician Bryan Ferry, choreographer Wayne McGregor and the artist film maker Steve McQueen and his sound pieces are in the permanent collections of museums including the Darwin Centre at the Natural History Museum.

Rimbaud described Bridging the World, which will be installed at the Museum of London in a sequence of speakers suspended throughout the building, as "a river of voices" in which he hopes to incorporate all the bridges in the world and all its languages too.

He has already recorded in Iceland, Canada, Denmark and is heading to Brazil. He will also be recording in the Docklands museum itself, inviting people to contact him with bridge names and London bridge stories through his website or Twitter. "I reply to all emails," he promised recklessly. "I get up really early in the morning to get through them."

The free exhibition Bridge, which opens on 27 June, will include paintings, prints and photographs covering centuries of history of London's bridges as well as their future, in the form of Thomas Heatherwick's designs for a new garden bridge. For one month only (before it must go back into its dark store room), a photograph dating from 1845 showing Isambard Kingdom Brunel's newly completed Hungerford Bridge, will also go on display for the first time.

Contemporary works include photographs by Lucinda Grange, an self-confessed "urban explorer" and climber of buildings and structures. Her images include photographs taken from inside the cavernous spaces hidden within the steel and concrete box girders of London Bridge. The artist revealed that she got in through a manhole cover on the South Bank, which has now been sealed.

The architectural historian Dan Cruikshank, who once tried and failed to use the same entrance, said he loved the "dark and secret history" of the capital's bridges, and sighed in envy as she spoke of the adventure. "If only I'd known, I'd have taken you with me," Grange replied, increasing his anguish.

Bridge is at Museum of London in Docklands from 27 June - 2 November

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Source: Guardian Web

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