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Matthew Ritchie and Aranda/Lash’s “The Morning Line” Receives a Permanent Home at the ZKM Karlsruhe

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Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21) announced on Wednesday that they would be permanently donating Mathiew Ritchie and Aranda/Lash’s “The Morning Line” to the Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM) Karlsruhe.  A sprawling public art and architectural intervention, the work will leave its home of the past 18 months on Vienna’s Schwarzenbergplatz in the coming weeks and be reinstalled this spring at the ZKM.

By giving “The Morning Line” to the ZKM, an institution that offers a rather participatory approach to exhibition-making, the TBA21 pushes forth a conversation around their most ambitious project to date that moves it beyond the confines of the art world. “The Morning Line is not only a public art sculpture but also an instrument of advanced music. As such, it depends on being in an environment where it continues to be challenged by innovation and technology, as well as maintaining its concert program based on an ongoing commissions program,” TBA 21 chairwoman Francesca von Habsburg wrote in a statement, citing a continued cooperation with TBA21 advisor and ZKM CEO Peter Weibel.

The work itself is a sprawling arrangement of filigree, truncated tetrahedrons designed by ARUP AGU that are meant to mimic forms within Ritchie’s works on paper. However, as the ZKM placement suggests, the piece’s most distinguishing characteristic is not its formal realization but the technological innovation present within it that allows it to create distinct aural environments for visitors. Whether used to amplify live concerts — 15 new compositions were debuted during the work’s stint in Vienna — or to replay any one of its 26 original spatial sound works, “The Morning Line”’s 46 speakers and 12 subwoofers use sensors and cameras to adapt the sound output automatically to visitor flow, in what amounts to passive interaction between artwork and viewer.

“The Morning Line” was initially created in 2008 and comes to rest in Karlsruhe after stints in Seville and Istanbul before Vienna.

[Image courtesy TBA21]

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