The Bell Isle Zoo is one of the examples of the decay of the once great city of Detroit. Situated on an island in the Fleming Channel, the zoo was shut down years ago because of lack of money just as many other landmarks in and around the city. The deserted area around the zoo became a popular spot for teenagers to hang around and race their cars. Meanwhile the zoo itself, secretly transformed into a new ecosystem with a surprising variety of wildlife. Especially a great number of bird species.
Artists Paul Elliman & Nicole Macdonald found out about this natural world inside the manmade ruins and reflect on this by documenting everything through audio and video and by creating artistic projects.
One of these reflections can be seen at Casco in Utrecht. A big subwoofer is installed next to a TV that displays the sound of the bird phonetically. The sound of the bird is lead through the subwoofer and is transformed into a deep bass. It’s a reaction on the two worlds living so close together. The teenage kids riding around in their cars pumping out loud music through their car stereos and the birds that try to adapt to their new neighbours. The only question that arises is; ‘Do you call a bird-sound-emitting-subwoofer a tweeter?’
This installation as well as audio and video fragments of the zoo can be found at Casco until the 3rd of October.
Subwoofer installation from the expo 'Teach me to Disapear' at Casco, Utrecht