Axel Crettenand

Axel Crettenand
Axel Crettenand, Chaotic Arrangement For 66 Voices, 2023 ©Biennale Son I FINI'Stud

Chaotic arrangement for 66 voices, 2023

Chaotic arrangement for 66 voices by artist Axel Crettenand is a sound installation that translates the chaotic behavior of heat into a chorus of human voices in real time.

Installed inside a room at the Chandoline hydroelectric power station in Sion on the occasion of the Son Biennale, Chaotic arrangement for 66 voices takes the form of a transparent cubic structure with cables connected to a microprocessor and containing a volume of water. The fluid is heated locally, producing a chaotic distribution of heat observed by twelve thermometers. Translated into 66 notes sung by specially developed software, the data thus collected is transformed into an unpredictable song, a random and potentially infinite composition orchestrated by the invisible movement of chaos.

Probably designed to house machinery and gears, the room that now houses the work resembles a small industrial pantheon, characterized by a semicircular floor plan and a central opening in the ceiling that allowed ventilation. Here, Chaotic arrangement for 66 voices fits into the architecture and history of the power station like a machine that's working again. The sound propagating through the space forms a link between presence and absence, reactivating a distant space that evokes the ritual of work and recalls an ancient dichotomy between man and machine.

OTO SOUND MUSEUM was invited by the Biennale de Son to exhibit this piece at La Centrale.

OTO SOUND MUSEUM is a nomadic museum that produces, presents and collects recent or unpublished sound works by contemporary artists from different horizons, geographies and generations. The museum was born digitally as an iconoclastic environment and utopian architecture on the platform to host digital sound exhibitions. It is also used to travel to different locations in the physical realm, transforming its identity along the way. One of its aims is to regenerate and interrogate residual historic places through sound practices.

Axel Crettenand

Born in 1989 in Sion

Lives and works in Zurich

A graduate in photography from ECAL (Lausanne), Axel Crettenand continued his studies in Zurich, where he obtained a Master of Fine Arts from ZHdK. Initially focusing on photography and video experimentation, his practice has evolved to include voices, sounds and texts in generative installations between art and science.

This artist-inventor is also interested in the manifestations of contemporary spirituality. His latest research includes a commented image atlas, L'obsession de la forme (2021), which examines and speculates on the relationship between God and mathematics.

In 2019, he won the ZHdK-Avina Project Fund to create the participatory performance The Green Spirits. Produced with Francesca Ceccherini, the performance encouraged the public to take part in the collective creation of a vast floor painting made from a multiplication of stamps representing flowers and leaves at their actual size. The moment was accompanied by a sound piece.

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