Model for Audio Recording (no. 3) of Practicing Musicians from the CNSMDP in Paris, 2009

Live audio recording (3.34 min.), installation variable. Models for audio installation, 1:4, cardboard juice and cereal boxes, 20×10 cm.
Recording (no. 3) of Practicing Musicians from the CNSMDP in Paris is one of 4 recordings made in June 2009. The recording was made in a corridor space fac ing 3 closed doors through which the sound of musicians practicing could be heard. Each musician played her/his instrument with no awareness of the pieces being practiced in the adjacent rooms. When making these recordings I had no visual access to any of the rooms or the practitioners. With each recording new, unplanned and non-composed pieces of music were created.

Models were made by using everyday cardboard boxes as rooms and installing models of the instruments into these – mimicking the recorded situation. The boxes were found in the city where the recording was made. (Paris)


Le Conservatoire de Paris, CNSMDP
The Building

The relocation of the Conservatoire was a natural extension of the project to create a “City of Music” devoted to multicultural experimentation on a single site. Construction of this project, authorised in 1983 by President François Mitterrand, was entrusted to Christian de Portzamparc, winner of the architecture competition in 1985.

His idea was to divide the site into distinct functional areas, with teaching and research going to the Conservatoire (opened in 1990) and production/performance and information to the Cité de la Musique to the East.

The challenge facing the architect was to design a building that would let in as much light as possible and facilitate encounters among its users.
“The building as a whole is divided into four blocks running north-south and separated by corridors of light. […] The rooms are arranged in acoustically insulated sub-assemblies, connected up by meeting places and open, well-lit, fluid and resonant passageways […] This solution allowed easy circulation while at the same time satisfying acoustic insulation specifications that prevented certain superimpositions.”
Christian de Portzamparc, architect.