Dropping stations, Egg box messages and Finch nesting song

8 April 2011

Dropping station 1

Dropping station 1

In response to my studio space at CAMAC, I have created ‘Dropping stations’, ‘Egg box messages’ and ‘Finch nesting song’.

Each piece has been created using found or recycled objects and will be used as a catalyst to develop a new installation each week. All the pieces have taken inspiration from the surroundings at Marnay-sur-Seine and the notion of the pigeon post and balloon mail into Paris during the Franco-Prussian War.

Dropping stations (work in progress) Door, ladder, goose feathers, zebra finch feathers, yellow twisted pods and balloons

Two ‘dropping stations’ have been set up in the studio, one made from a door leaned against a wall and the other, a ladder leaned against the back wall. Items, including goose feathers, zebra finch feathers (from my birds at home), yellow twisted pods (from the trees in CAMAC garden) and balloons have been rolled and dropped from each ‘dropping station’ and the sound of the impact recorded.

The notion of the pigeon having a destination whereby to drop its message and the visualisation of it soaring into the air, (as well as the balloon mail), has made me think about the sounds of things rising and falling. ‘Dropping stations’ will be developed and used to generate new sound recordings for next week’s installation.

Egg box messages 7 French eggs boxes, paper letters and marker pen.

Egg box messages

Egg box messages

Cher Ami is a famous war pigeon, who delivered a message that saved the Lost Battalion (194 people), in WWI. The two pigeons that tried to send messages before her failed to do so (they were shot down). This is a tribute to Cher Ami and the two nameless pigeons.

First message sent by unknown pigeon number 1:

‘Many wounded we cannot evacuate.’

Second message sent by unknown pigeon number 2:

‘Men are suffering can support be sent?’

Third message sent by Cher Ami that saved the Lost Battalion:

‘We are along the road parallel to 276.4 our artillery is dropping a barrage directly on us. For heaven’s sake stop it!’

Finch nesting song Lantern, French envelope, elastic band, confetti, polystyrene,marker pen, gaffa tape, iphone4 playing ‘Finch nesting song’.

Finch nesting song

Finch nesting song

Finch nesting song (detail)

Finch nesting song (detail)

I keep two zebra finches in my room at home and they usually wake me up in the morning. When I let them out of the cage they fly up to the light and try to make a nest out of ripped newspaper and rubbish out of my bin. The birds sing and call to each other all day until it starts to get dark, (the call of a zebra finch sounds similar to a squeaky toy.) The sounds in the morning at Marnay-sur-Seine are very different, but spectacular, with a loud chorus of birds singing each morning.  The video playing on my iphone shows the finches making a nest in my bedroom light.


About Lucy Stevens

Lucy Stevens’ artistic practice examines the acoustic ecology of the natural environment, using field recording, digital illustration, performance and printmaking as a tool to visualise sound produced by wildlife, weather and other natural phenomena.
This entry was posted in Installation. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Dropping stations, Egg box messages and Finch nesting song

  1. Louisa says:

    Love the Egg box messages – looks like you’ve been busy

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s