Plis / Replis (프랑스 포머리 동굴 전시)

La Fabrique Sonore (Pommery#9), Exhibition, Pommery Champagnes, Reims, France, 2011.09

* Collaboration with Ali Momeni / Robin Meier

“The Baroque refers not to an essence but rather to an operative function, to a trait.  It endlessly produces folds. […] Moving along two infinities, as if infinity were composed of two stages or floors: the pleats of matter and the folds in the soul. […] the lower floor, pierced with windows, and the upper floor, blind, and closed, but on the other hand resonating as if it were a musical salon translating the visible movements below into sounds up above.”

– Gilles Deleuze  from “The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque”, 1992 [“Le Pli: Leibniz et le Baroque”, 1988]

The fold, as a multi-layered metaphor for the relationship between mind and matter, inspires plis/replis. The installation is made up of a highly geometric, folded and suspended structure that amplifies the experiences and metaphors of champagne. The primary structure, a 10 x 10 x 12m cone suspended in a pyramid-shaped underground cave – one of the largest “crayères” of Vranken-Pommery’s 18km long underground system of corridors and caves dating back to Roman times. This architectural augmentation of the space also serves as a functional loud-speaker.  A glass platform suspended at the focal point within the cone holds a vessel filled with champagne. Using the actual sounds of effervescence picked up by a special microphone immersed in the champagne vessel, a real-time analysis/synthesis audio system creates a continually evolving sound environment, diffused downward from above.

The architectural design of this work combines ancient paper folding techniques with contemporary computer-aided-design and manufacturing processes. Plis/Replis attempts to create an internal space that is perceptually separated from the external space. The form is generated through a digital parametric process that allowed us to design, fabricate and assemble this suspended 345 cubic-meter structure from 285 flat sheets of aluminum/polyethylene composite, precisely folded 2,535 times. The structure amplifies a 600W co-axial speaker-driver in order to create a uniquely rich and immersive acoustic environment for the visitors standing beneath the cone.

All Photos  © Ali Momeni

All Drawings © Hyoung-gul Kook