Thessaloniki: Cured works of art at a sound and noise exhibition

A special one, consisting of sound-moving sculptures, created by Nikos Chinikas, Professor Emeritus at the Department of Architects of AUTH… The sound of the wind follows that of rain, which soon grows stronger. Despite the storm that seems to have erupted, somewhere near, a street musician continues to play. At the same time, short sounds remind well-known cartoons and sound effects from comedy scenes of old Greek films. By activating someone other than hearing and feeling vision, he sees that none of this actually happens, but sounds arise from well-saturated … art works. This is the exhibition “nouryboton”, consisting of sound-moving sculptures, created by Nikos Chinikas, Professor Emeritus at the Department of Architects of AUTH. He enlisted his knowledge of design and engineering, his master’s degree in the sound and acoustics of the venues, as well as his worship of music and managed to do six complex and original works. “The originality for me lies in the concept of conservatism. The diathetics is when you mix both science and arts,” he states at the Athens/Macedonian News Agency, as he guides us to the exhibition, while often interrupting to approach one of the visitors and reveal to him a “secret” of a better function of the exhibition he is curious about. Moreover, the inscriptions ‘do not touch’ are absent from this report. On the contrary, public participation is almost imperative, since they are invited to rotate levers, draw springs or hit with various objects of metal and wooden surfaces and … listen to how they respond. “Sound sculptures produce sound effects and sounds with a distinct peak frequency so that they can form rhythmic or non-melodies and noises. By rubbing materials with hands or other tools, different resonance frequencies arise and acoustic atmospheres are created. All “noise” can be used by one or more individuals simultaneously. This possibility turns a simple sound machine into a creation tool,” says Mr. Chinikas. As it reveals, the central idea is about sound and noise, i.e. acoustics, music, which is one piece of art. But also with the movement with mechanisms, concerning the piece of engineering and sculpture, which is the second piece of art. As for his original inspiration, this came from an old book at least 25 years ago. “In this he showed the musicians of the road (buskers) of London in the late 19th century and in a sketch he was a guy holding something like a washcloth—the part of the boats you rubbed the clothes, and with a brush he held the rhythm. They generally used what they found discarded and with original ideas they turned it into a musical instrument,” he explains. So he decided to do something for them and his first work came up. Gradually he began to create the following, with his house turning into a laboratory and everything that fell into his hands being potentially material for his constructions. The chain that holds the sink cap, part of metal hangers, bicycle rays, cans of pastilles, brushes, pens, strings, shells, tree fruits and minerals, are only some of the materials used to create the works. “During the construction many small issues arose that needed corrections and led to changes in the design and the final object. A dominant concept in the changes was the research of the sounds produced by the materials and the choice of the most appropriate motion mechanisms,” says Mr. Chinikas. It also points out that electricity or robotics were not used in any way to refer to archetypes of materials and mechanisms. “The result is “natural” or analog sounds, in a digital storm era,” he says. All “noise” in the hands of children becomes a musical composition game, while in theatre performances complement acting, movement, dancing and dialogues with sounds. The exhibition is hosted in the round hall of the ground floor of MOmus-Museum of Contemporary Art, within the premises of ITH.