The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design is pleased to announce, “Listening Theatres: The Sounds of Iconic Landscapes and Architectural Spaces,” an exhibition exploring how listening to created spaces can inspire creativity, imagination, and discovery of the surrounding world. The exhibit (July 16 – September 13, 2020) will include sound, animation, and drawings by Karen Van Lengen and Jim Welty. It will feature work using recordings and interpretive drawings, presented in active animations that celebrate the aural personalities of iconic architectures. Photographs of the drawings and stills of the animations are included in a colorful display that demonstrates the artists’ process.
The spatial animations included in this exhibition are The Academical Village at the University of Virginia, and New York City spaces of Grand Central Terminal, The New York Public Library, The Seagram Building, Rockefeller Center and the Guggenheim Museum.
Karen Van Lengen is the William Kenan Professor of Architecture and former dean (1999-2009) at the University of Virginia School of Architecture. Van Lengen began her professional career as a design Associate at I M Pei & Partners before forming her own firm in New York City. Her recent projects have focused on the aural aspects of architectural space, bringing awareness to the comprehensive experience of ‘place’. This work developed during her University Fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities resulted in the Soundscape Architecture website that displays creative interpretations and analytic drawings of the characteristic sounds of iconic buildings. The University of Virginia Jefferson Trust supported the Listening to the Lawn website and the Open Gates animation project.
Jim Welty is an accomplished artist who created the animations for Soundscape New York and Open Gates as well as the Soundscape Architecture web site. Welty began his career as an artist working with Frank Stella as Master Printer and collaborator for over 10 years. He has exhibited his sculptures nationally, including a major exhibition entitled “A Short History of Decay,” at the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia. He is currently developing a new interactive body of work incorporating sound, animation and sculpture, extending the current project’s mission to foster genuine listening and engagement with our environment.
The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design is located at 2501 Monument Avenue in Richmond, Virginia’s historic Fan District. The Branch Museum inspires current generations to appreciate, support and create exemplary architecture and design. The Branch is dedicated to the advocacy and stewardship of our rich regional heritage and invites the public to envision a world enriched by architecture and design. The Branch is open to the public Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday 1-5 p.m. Learn more at www.branchmuseum.org.