3rd 01SJ Biennial September 2010

A global festival of art on the edge

Tantalum Memorial — Reconstruction

Harwood, Wright, Yokokoji
Tantalum Memorial — Reconstruction
Mechanical strowger switches, mixed media
A FUSE Commissioned Residency for the *2nd Biennial 01SJ Global Festival of Art on the Edge*, ZERO1, CADRE Laboratory and the Lucas Artists Program, Montalvo Arts Center. Team members: Thomas Asmuth, Student Team Manager; Ethan Miller, Danielle Siembieda, Yumika Tanaka. Special thanks to: Teck Liew, Mike Lowell, Wayne Madsen, Vivian Mak, Mike Yohanes.
01SJ Biennial: Superlight
San Jose Museum of Art
May 10 – August 31, 2008
Tantalum Memorial:

‘Tantalum Memorial’ is a telephony based memorial to the people who have died as a result of the ‘coltan wars’ in the Congo. Coltan ore is mined for the metal tantalum – an essential component of mobile phones that is now more valuable than gold. The work is constructed from redundant electromechanical Strowger switches – the basis of the previous generation of telephone exchanges. These switches are reanimated by tracking the phone calls from ‘Telephone Trottoire’ – a social telephony network also designed by the artists for the Congolese radio programme Nostalgie Ya Mboka in London. Their precisely poised movements and sounds create a sculptural presence for this otherwise intangible network of circulating conversations, and weave together the ambiguities of globalization, transnational migration and the impact of our addiction to constant communication.

More information about the Fuse:_ residency can be found here and at the Fuse:_ site.