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Culture & Religion

German Artist Turns Exhibition Space into “Music Gallery”

Wolfgang Tillmans’ “playback room” will provide a superior listening experience while treating pop music with the same regard as other pieces of art. 

Unless you go to hear it live or own an impressive home stereo system, your music and the equipment you play it on probably lack in audio quality. It’s the sacrifice of being able to store 5,000 songs (including 4,500 you don’t actually listen to) in your front jeans pocket.

The renowned German photographer Wolfgang Tillmans finds this reality to be most unsatisfactory. That’s why he’s transformed his Berlin gallery space into what he calls “the playback room,” an art exhibition dedicated to the listening of popular music. The compact space is outfitted with lounge chairs and a top-of-the-line sound system. The ambience features cool, dimmed lights that contribute to a somewhat sanctifie atmosphere. Tillmans’ goal is to treat the listening experience just like going to the museum to see a Picasso. He also wants to give visitors the chance to listen to music the way it ought to be heard.

First up on Tillmans’ playlist is the British group Colourbox, who helped pioneer sampling in the 1980s. He’ll have them on repeat for six weeks. After that, he’ll pick something else.

One interesting note that may interest audiophiles: that Tillmans’ idea of the ideal listening experience runs on digital. He’s not playing Colourbox on a record player; he’s made a CD.

“This is not a vinyl fetish,” he told The Guardian.

Read more at Art Net & The Guardian

Photo credit: steveball / Shutterstock


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