Installation. 2018

3D printed casing, acrylic, solenoid. 

Chitter is an installation consisting of a collection of small electronic devices, each housing a single solenoid electromagnet switched on and off in an evolving rhythmic pattern. Controlled independently and sounding at different tempos, the tapping of the solenoids fills the space they inhabit with a dense, mechanical sound texture.

The visitor is drawn into encounters with individual devices as their own rhythms become identifiable against the background milieu. Nearby devices fall in and out of sync with each other, passing through moments of transient rhythmic cohesion. Movement through the space exposes a multitude of machine voices, conversations emerging and dissolving in a shifting network of allegiances and conflicts.

The devices are identical, cheap, and numerous. They echo the consumer electronics that fill modern life yet are rarely taken as objects of contemplation. The solenoid, a component usually intended for internal and silent use, is external and noisy.

Placing the incidental and suppressed qualities of everyday gadgets in the foreground, the work aims to displace their role as anonymous tools, offering a mode of encounter in which they appear in themselves and in dialogue with each other.