FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 23, 2021
Lyman Allyn Art Museum
Press Contact: Rebecca Dawson, Director of Communications
860.443.2545 ext. 2112 / [email protected]
LYMAN ALLYN ART MUSEUM EXHIBITS AARON TAYLOR KUFFNER’S GAMELATRON
NEW LONDON – The Lyman Allyn Art Museum is excited to announce the opening of a new exhibition on Saturday, Feb. 27 by conceptual artist, sculptor and composer Aaron Taylor Kuffner. Encountering Resonance: Aaron Taylor Kuffner’s Gamelatron will be on view through May 23.
A Gamelatron is a sound-producing kinetic sculpture presented as site-specific installations and stand-alone art works. Based on the Indonesian music tradition known as gamelan, they are made from bronze and iron instruments that are retrofitted with mechanical mallets on sculptural mounts. The elegant sculptures are connected to a computer that transmits digital compositions into an array of electrical pulsations, resulting in a ghostly, musical automaton.
“We are thrilled to bring this immersive artistic experience to the Lyman Allyn,” said Museum Director Sam Quigley, who is known as an expert in Asian and Indonesian music in his own right. “It promises to actively engage our visitors in an intermingling of ancient art and music and modern technology.”
While living for several years in Java and Bali, Kuffner learned to play the gamelan, researched the process of making the instruments, cataloged various tuning modalities, and developed his own electronic notation system, all the while gleaning gamelan’s cultural and spiritual significance. Shortly after returning to New York in 2008, he was awarded an Artist in Residency with renowned engineer and technologist Eric Singer at the League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots. Their collaboration culminated in the construction of the first Gamelatron in September 2008.
Since then, Kuffner has built more than 60 Gamelatrons of various sizes, instrumentations and intentions. These works have been shown around the world in settings ranging from museums to retreat centers, spas, private homes, unique public spaces, educational institutions, cultural centers and exceptional events. Kuffner says that he views his works as an offering to the observer.
The instruments, robotic mechanisms, and sculptural mounting systems are all handmade. The instruments used in Gamelatrons are archival, made by Kuffner or commissioned from master craftsmen in Java and Bali. All compositions are written and performed by Kuffner, and the scores are unique for every Gamelatron, and often composed after installation.
The virtual opening reception will be on Friday, Feb. 26 from 6 – 7 pm. Please visit the calendar of events tab on lymanallyn.org for event registration information.
Encountering Resonance is supported by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Office of the Arts; and an anonymous foundation.
For more information, please contact Rebecca Dawson by email at [email protected].
About Aaron Taylor Kuffner
Aaron Taylor Kuffner is an American-born conceptual artist based in New York. Kuffner’s dynamic work reaches far outside conventional forms of representation: it actively engages its audience and pushes art to serve society. His pieces often take the form of multi-year projects that require in-depth research, collaboration with field experts and the development of new specialized skill sets. Each project provides unique conceptual tools that further the evolution of consciousness through the experience of beauty and the sublime.
About the Lyman Allyn Art Museum
The Lyman Allyn Art Museum welcomes visitors from New London, southeastern Connecticut and all over the world. Established in 1926 by a gift from Harriet Allyn in memory of her seafaring father, the Museum opened the doors of its beautiful neo-classical building surrounded by 12 acres of green space in 1932. Today it presents a number of changing exhibitions each year and houses a fascinating collection of over 17,000 objects from ancient times to the present; artworks from Africa, Asia, the Americas and Europe, with particularly strong collections of American paintings, decorative arts and Victorian toys and doll houses.
The museum is located at 625 Williams Street, New London, Connecticut, exit 83 off I-95. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, Sundays 1:00 – 5:00 pm; closed Mondays and major holidays. For more information call 860.443.2545, ext. 2129 or visit us on Facebook or at: www.lymanallyn.org.