Chelsea Leventhal

Branches of the pine shifting


5-channel site-responsive sound installation

This sound installation considers the experience of the urbanite haunted by the everlasting pull of the heightened awareness, centeredness, and creativity found in nature. The basis of the work consists of quiet recitations of poems by New England poets that address psychosensory and auditory experiences of the natural world, as well as the relentlessness of nostalgia. These are merged with field recordings made during the three weeks spent in residency at I-Park, which are then used as impulse responses for the sounds of the voices. The speakers are housed in mailboxes typically found in cities, which through their mere presence forge an inquiry into themes related to nature and civilization, communication and solitude, and reality and fiction. The visitor listens to sounds drift through the space, blending with the existing environment, and is also invited to open the mailboxes to receive their messages.

Commissioned for the 2019 Site-responsive Art Biennale at I-Park Foundation in East Haddam, CT.