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Yuri Suzuki unveils Arborhythm at SFMOMA

Sound artist Yuri Suzuki presents Arborhythm, a vibrant art installation and sculpture comprising horn-shaped speakers. They play ambient music inspired by the sounds in the city right at the entrance of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). The tree-like sculptures greet visitors before they enter the museum with sounds ranging from the haunting calls of foghorns and the rhythmic lull of ocean waves to the playful melodies of sea lions and the cacophony of cable cars.

Imagined as an immersive wellness soundtrack, Yuri Suzuki’s Arborhythm remixes the ambient noise of San Francisco, piecing together over a hundred field recordings sourced from the city and beyond using artificial intelligence. These colorful speakers play these compilations of sounds as they tower over the visitors. The sound artist employs programming with the help of AI to bring together the reverberating and often-haunting sounds of the colorful horn-shaped speakers, reminding viewers of the city they’re in.

images courtesy of Yuri Suzuki

colorful horn-shaped speakers that play ambient city sounds

Yuri Suzuki’s Arborhythm was commissioned by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), in tandem with the exhibition Art of Noise, which runs from May 4th to August 18th, 2024. The colorful horn-shaped speakers serve as a towering art installation and a sound sculpture that aims to pay homage to this city in California. The sound artist crafts his recent work from steel and aluminum, referring to the tree of life and foghorns, an instrument used to signal the arrival of the fog, for its design cues.

A mix of red, orange, yellow, and green shades make up the color scheme of the horn-shaped speakers at SFMOMA. For Yuri Suzuki, they circle back to the painted horizons of San Francisco at sunset, the vibrant hues of the Bay Area, and the Golden Gate Bridge’s ‘international orange.’ Before entering the museum, visitors are seemingly bathed in lightness, brought about by the seen presence of sounds that take over the noticeable Arborhythm installation.

‘Arborhythm transcends mere auditory stimulation,’ says Yuri Suzuki. ‘By tuning into the rhythms of our local environment, it offers a sanctuary for relaxation and rejuvenation. Through subtle manipulation of sound, we aim to replenish attention and alleviate stress, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in the therapeutic embrace of Arborhythm.’ The horn-shaped speakers are supported by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s Accessions Committee Fund, in exchange for a gift from Peggy Guggenheim.

yuri suzuki arborhythm horn speakers SFMOMA
Yuri Suzuki’s presents his colorful horn speakers ‘Arborhythm’ at SFMOMA

yuri suzuki arborhythm horn speakers SFMOMA
there are three horn speakers at the entrance of SFMOMA for Yuri Suzuki’s Arborhythm

yuri suzuki arborhythm horn speakers SFMOMA
these colorful horn speakers play ambient city sounds of San Francisco

yuri suzuki arborhythm horn speakers SFMOMA
the sounds range from the haunting calls of foghorns to the rhythmic lull of ocean waves

yuri suzuki arborhythm horn speakers SFMOMA
Yuri Suzuki with his Arborhythm horn speakers at SFMOMA

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