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Indesign Magazine
Indesign Magazine

The Male Womb

A new installation encourages us to listen.


October 21st, 2008

The way we live our lives today means our senses, particularly our hearing, are being constantly bombarded. Many of us spend thousands on audio-visual entertainment systems, but do we ever really consider what it means to sit and listen.

Chosen for exhibition at this year’s Tokyo Designer’s Week, this new installation by designers Lou Wies, Eriko Watanabe and Igor Kebel, aims to construct the perfect listening environment.

‘Kindertotenlieder: the listening room’ is designed specifically for appreciating Gustav Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder (songs on the death of children), inspired by the intense feelings of a man losing his child.

“Our listening room is this space in which men create; the study, composition room or
laboratory, a radical space in which deep intellectual and or scientific rigour and insight intermingle with hubris. The listening room is this male womb,” say the designers.

The installation asks people (particularly men) to reflect and appreciate the pure auditory experience and calls on mythological stories of exploited power and superheroes. “The listening room is a bubble, a temporary space, that we have opened up within an imagining of this myth as an ancient physical sediment.”

The walls are made of paper – the medium of the technological process – with contours, curves and plateaus and strategically placed speakers.

Take a virtual sneak peek here…







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