JORGE MACCHI EXHIBITS “THE SUBMERGED CATHEDRAL” IN SWITZERLAND
The Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne (MCBA) presents a new site-specific installation by Jorge Macchi (born 1963, lives and works in Buenos Aires).
The idea of fiction lies at the heart of the work created by Jorge Macchi. By placing familiar objects (clocks, instruments, maps, newspapers, etc.) in carefully arranged displays, Macchi lays for us a number of visual traps. Through these he questions our ability to perceive the fragile balance of daily life, which is permanently threatened by incident. The installation he has designed and mounted for MCBA’s Espace Projet starts with the museum’s wall of plate glass and its seven individual elements.
Fascinated since the age of twenty by Claude Debussy’s prelude La Cathédrale engloutie (The Submerged Cathedral), Macchi connects the number of large windows with the same number of bells hanging in the Cathedral of Lausanne to create a sound piece whose composition is based on chance, that is, visitors’ movements around and through the installation.
Debussy’s La Cathédrale engloutie and hence Macchi’s installation refer to the legend of the town of Ys, which is supposed to be found somewhere along the Breton coast, although it sank beneath the waves long ago. From time to time, notably when the coast is wrapped in fog or mist, the bells of the Cathedral of Ys can be heard tolling in the deep waters of the sea. Jorge Macchi has set up in the Espace Projet a remembrance of Ys and the Debussy prelude, and relates both to Lausanne, its cathedral, and MCBA, by heightening the optical and echo effects that are peculiar to underwater sound. The sound installation was developed by Manuel Eguía with the support of the Universidad Nacional de Quilmes, Argentina.