Tentacule

Tentacule, Nolan Lem, 2017

IDEA: A Velcro octopus sound cyborg

WHAT: 'Tentacule' is a site-specific sound machine that houses ten speakers which are mechanically driven by Velcro extrications that occur on top of the speakers’ paper cones. The kinetic dynamics of the Velcro becoming hooked and unfastened is transmitted through large plastic tubes that resonate and transfer the acoustic energy into different parts of the space. The imposing cephalopodic presence of the black machine suggests a cyborgian instrument somewhere in between an organ, a music box, and a Luigi Nono noise machine. 

WHY: The installation examines the sonic materiality of Velcro as it is situated within the ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) and BDSM (bondage, dominance, slave, master) communities. This “BDSMR” object complicates our awareness of sound and sensuality by casting materiality as an erotic fetish, one that derives from our darker, more lurid impulses. 

BY: Nolan Lem, on view until April 21st at Lhoste Art Contemporain, Arles, France.

Tentacule, Nolan Lem, 2017

Tentacule, Nolan Lem, 2017

Tentacule, Nolan Lem, 2017