Ping Pong

Ping Pong is an installation made for the closing exhibition of Public Art Experience and set up in what was my studio at the time of my Belval residency. The installation consists of a six-channel version of the previously described composition, 38 bpm, its framed score and legend hung on the wall, as well as a ping pong table.

People are invited to come in and play ping pong. Meanwhile they hear, over six loudspeakers, a recording of 38 bpm. In this six-channel version each percussionist is heard over one loudspeaker.

Due to its height and the hard material of its construction, the space has an amazing acoustic with a very long reverb. It is almost impossible to have a conversation in it and music can only be played at a moderate volume. The sound of the ping pong ball hitting the table is naturally amplified, matching it nicely with the percussion instruments heard over the loudspeakers. The steady beat of 38 bpm sounds like a metronome. The ongoing seamless loop is interrupted by the irregular sound pattern produced by playing ping pong—a random, unpredictable human intervention. The ping pong player, probably without being aware of it, becomes a guest musician.