What does a car door sound like when it is played with a bow?

Vehicle

Gerhard Marx, Shane Cooper, Diamanda La Berge Dramm

Artist Gerhard Marx has grafted two violins, a cello and a double bass onto the body of a motor vehicle. By transferring the delicate constellations of strings and bridges onto the surfaces of a vehicle, he turns the automotive body into resonator box to draw rich, varied and evocative voices from its body.

Vehicle is as much about the intangible and emotive qualities of sound as it is about the raw, suggestive materiality of physical objects. It is the overlap of sound and object that drives this project – how does sound affect the way we see? Can we give ‘voice’ to an object and so extract narrative from its body?

Marx places these car-doors-turned-instruments in the deft hands of the award winning Dutch Violinist, Diamanda La Berge Dramm and celebrated South African Double Bassist Shane Cooper to explore the varied potential sound-worlds that they draw from it. At times dark and broody, at times gently poetic, the immersive soundscapes of their improvisational interaction promise a mesmerizing and immersive experience to the audience.

For the Holland Festival Vehicle will take two forms in theatre Frascati - live performances by Diamanda Dramm and Shane Cooper will be interspersed by an installation version of the project in which the instruments and the automotive lights are combined with a multi-channel video projection featuring pre-recorded prose by poet and travel writer Toast Coetzer written for Vehicle and filmed improvisations by Shane Cooper and legendary South African musician Kyle Shepherd.

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background information

Frascati programme associate artists

For two weeks Frascati theatre will be the home of associate artists William Kentridge and Faustin Linyekula. Alongside performances by themselves and artists who inspire them, there will be a lot of work from their studios.

These presentations show the importance of Kentridges The Centre for the Less Good Idea and Linyekula’s Studios Kabako, and how they function. There will be a unique and exciting programme in which the boundaries between various artforms disappear. Also, we will be organising a series of debates, called The Welcome Table, in which themes from the presentations (that are also topical in the Netherlands) are discussed.

Kentridge and Linyekula use The Centre For The Less Good Idea and Studios Kabako to give both young and more experienced (performing) artists the space, opportunities and inspiration to work on their oeuvre. For Amsterdam they selected work using different criteria: Linyekula is giving two young artists the opportunity to test new work on Dutch audiences as works-in-progress; Kentridge selected presentations from all the seasons thus far been organised at The Centre.

Choose one or more parts of the programme and be surprised by performances that not only add a new perspective to Kentridge and Linyekula’s artistry, but also tell new stories – from intensely political reflections, exceptional childhood memories and attempts to create new myths for a new era.

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biography

Gerhard Marx (South Africa, 1976) constructs drawings, sculptures and performance projects by dissecting and rearranging pre-existent 

conventions to explore the poetic and philosophical potential therein. His seventh solo exhibition, Ecstatic Archive, was held at the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg in 2019. His work was selected for the Venice Biennale 2013. International exhibitions include My Joburg at La Maison Rouge, Paris and Kunsthalle im Lipsiusbau, Dresden; and The Beautiful Ones, Nolan Judin, Berlin. Marx’s work is shown regularly at international Art Fairs, including Art Basel, Frieze (London) and FIAC (Paris) and features in numerous public and private art collections. Marx has completed several large scale public sculpture commissions, including Vertical Aerial, Johannesburg at the Constitutional Court, Jhb, The Fire Walker, a collaboration with William Kentridge; and Paper Pigeon, a collaboration with Maja Marx. He has extensive experience in theatre, as scenographer, director, filmmaker and playmaker, including REwind: A Cantata for Voice, Tape and Testimony (directed by Marx, interactive film by Gerhard Marx and Maja Marx, composed by Philip Miller), performed at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank, London (2010), the Market Theatre, Johannesburg (2008) and the 62’Centre, William College, Massachusetts (2007).and rearranging pre-existent conventions to explore the poetic and philosophical potential therein. His seventh solo exhibition, Ecstatic Archive, was held at the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg in 2019. His work was selected for the Venice Biennale 2013. International exhibitions include My Joburg at La Maison Rouge, Paris and Kunsthalle im Lipsiusbau, Dresden; and The Beautiful Ones, Nolan Judin, Berlin. Marx’s work is shown regularly at international Art Fairs, including Art Basel, Frieze (London) and FIAC (Paris) and features in numerous public and private art collections. Marx has completed several large scale public sculpture commissions, including Vertical Aerial, Johannesburg at the Constitutional Court, Jhb, The Fire Walker, a collaboration with William Kentridge; and Paper Pigeon, a collaboration with Maja Marx. He has extensive experience in theatre, as scenographer, director, filmmaker and playmaker, including REwind: A Cantata for Voice, Tape and Testimony (directed by Marx, interactive film by Gerhard Marx and Maja Marx, composed by Philip Miller), performed at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank, London (2010), the Market Theatre, Johannesburg (2008) and the 62’Centre, William College, Massachusetts (2007).

Shane Cooper is a bassist, composer and producer based in Cape Town, South Africa. His style is known for merging the worlds of South African jazz, electronic music, world music, and experimental sound sculpting. He is the winner of the prestigious Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz in 2013, as well as the South African Music Award for Best Jazz Album in 2014.  His most recent live band MABUTA has a critically acclaimed album released on vinyl with boutique Joburg record label Afrosynth, and distributed with Amsterdam-based record label Rush Hour.  His electronic music project Card On Spokes has performed on Boiler Room, and shared the stage with the likes of Little Dragon, Young Fathers, and Daedelus.  As a sideman and collaborator, Shane has worked with the late Zim Ngqawana, Louis Moholo, Spoek Mathambo, Kyle Shepherd, Lionel Loueke, and many more.  He has also written music for several award-winning films and theatre shows.

Diamanda La Berge Dramm (1991) grew up in Amsterdam, playing the violin since the age of four. Growing up among the leading figures of the Dutch classical, avant-garde and improvisation scene, her own concerts reflect all of these elements. At the age of thirteen, she premiered Raadsels by Louis Andriessen in the Concertgebouw for the opening of the Holland Festival 2005 and she has gone on to perform internationally as a soloist, chamber music player and band member. In April 2018 Diamanda won the Dutch Classical Talent Tour & Award, the first ever string soloist to do so. She has worked extensively with modern music luminaries such as Christian Wolff, Alvin Lucier, Gunther Schuller, Chaya Czernowin, Garth Knox and George Benjamin. Recent performances include a collaboration with Georg Friedrich Haas and concerts in Brussels and London with avant-garde rock legend John Cale. Current projects include the editing and premiering of a new series of violin studies by Garth Knox, and a duo with pianist Helena Basilova focusing on early 20th century Eastern European repertoire. As a Splendor Founder she plays and hosts concerts regularly.

 

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Credits

Performance
concept, directon
Gerhard Marx
performed by
Shane Cooper, Diamanda La Berge Dramm
Installation
creation
Gerhard Marx
performed by
Shane Cooper, Kyle Shepherd
video engineering, editing
Joav Dagan, Noah Cohen
text, vocals
Toast Coetzer

This performance was made possible with support by