The Sonic House


A detail of the Sonic House, featuring the wooden instrument/dining table and the microphone rigged stairs.

American multimedia artist Doug Aitkin has created an amazing piece of modern architecture right here in my town of residence, Venice, Ca. (home to some truly world class architecture as it is). Keep reading for details and link to a video of the house…

To hear and see the house click HERE. It’s completely worth sitting through the ad at the beginning of the New York Times video. DO IT! If I could embed it I would.

His Sonic House has “incorporated accelerometers and geologically sensitive microphones into its poured foundation”. The instruments pick up the movements of the earth and the sea beneath the foundation and amplify them sonically through speakers placed in the house. The wooden stairs are embedded with microphones in ascending tones wich can be played by walking up and down them. And there are two functioning tables that double as percussive instruments, one made of hollowed wood and the other of cut marble and stone. On top of all of that, the house is an extraordinary piece of aesthetic modernism.

Here’s a far more inclusive article about this extraordinary house.

Here’s Aitkin’s website.

But do, do click on the link above!

The dining room in artist Doug Aitken‘s home. The ground-floor walls and curtains have been silk-screened to simulate the hedges growing outside the window and the dining table is designed to function as a xylophone.


Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Architecture & Design, Journal, Music

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