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Trahern Gallery Explores Sound as Art in Interactive Exhibit

Austin Peay State University

Whether listening to public radio or walking down the street, we're surrounded by sound in our daily experience, but to sit and pay attention to a different kind of sound or to be introduced to a new sound in a familiar environment can be both calming and unnerving. On Sounds Good, Kate Lochte speaks with Michael Dickins, Gallery Director of Austin Peay State University's Trahern Gallery about an "Sound," which features artists from around the nation experimenting with sound as art in an interactive exhibit open through February 6.

Michael Dickins and APSU Department of Art Chair Barry Jones curated the exhibit, "Sound," which features 17 artists from around the country. The exhibit features 12 headphone experiences and several sculptural pieces including a large installation in the middle of campus. Dickins says, "We both use sound in our professional practice and we don't teach sound in our art department but thought it'd be interesting to introduce students and community members to sound art."

Tectonic Apperception by Jesse Thompson and Greg Pond


There are two versions of this piece in the show. This one is the headphone piece in the main gallery. Thompson and Pond also visited the campus to install this as a sculptural sound piece in the Trahern Gallery lobby, placing transducers on the glass, which vibrates to create the sound. Dickins says it's nice to sit in the lobby and listen to it and to watch students interact with it.

Dickins describes the large installation in the middle of campus as a piano-like sculpture designed by Peter Kay that plays randomized tracks from hidden mp3 players as you touch the piece. It creates a cathedral-like experience, he says, observing people meditating or doing yoga by it.

Trahern Gallery is located on College and 8th Street on the edge of campus in downtown Clarksville. It's open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. through February 6. The sculptural piece in the middle of campus is open 24/7.

Trahern Gallery website

Matt Markgraf joined the WKMS team as a student in January 2007. He's served in a variety of roles over the years: as News Director March 2016-September 2019 and previously as the New Media & Promotions Coordinator beginning in 2011. Prior to that, he was a graduate and undergraduate assistant. He is currently the host of the international music show Imported on Sunday nights at 10 p.m.
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