Zarouhie Abdalian + Joseph Rosenzweig: Transport Empty
Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland - 2017
Artists Zarouhie Abdalian (1982, New Orleans, LA) and Joseph Rosenzweig (1981, Pascagoula, MS) collaborate to create site specific sound installations and performances. Their projects combine an interest in the history of experimental music with an examination of the interplay between architecture and social encounters.
Transport Empty (2017), a sound installation made specifically for MOCA’s Stair A, explores the state of wage labor in the global marketplace. The piece is comprised of a series of evocative field recordings, each made at a site where work is done for an hourly wage and paired with a matching period of silence.
At each location — a commercial kitchen, a construction site, a machine shop — the sounds workers make reflect their specific activities to invoke familiar and yet unrecognizable scenes. These “aural shadows” excise specific moments from their context, reflecting the material conditions under which labor is performed.
Zarouhie Abdalian (1982, New Orleans, LA) lives and works in New Orleans, LA. She creates subtle sculptural and aural interventions in public space, altering viewers’ perceptions of familiar environments. Rooted in the particularities of site and context, Abdalian’s work typically responds to the specific attributes of a given location, architectural setting, or social landscape. She was the subject of a solo exhibition MATRIX: Zarouhie Abdalian, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley, CA (2013). Recent group exhibitions include Prospect.3 Notes for Now, New Orleans, LA (2014); 8th Berlin Biennale, Berlin, Germany (2014); Nothing Beside Remains, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne, Australia (2014); Shanghai Biennial: Reactivation, Shanghai, China (2012); When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes, CCA Wattis Institute of Contemporary Arts, San Francisco, CA (2012); Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Moscow, Russia (2012); Rendez-vous 12, South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa (2012); and the Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul, Turkey (2011). Abdalian earned a BA from Tulane University, New Orleans, LA and an MFA from California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA. Abdalian will be included in the forthcoming iteration of the Whitney Biennale, Summer 2017, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
Joseph Andrew Rosenzweig (1981, Pascagoula, MS) lives and works in New Orleans, LA. He is a composer, performer, curator, and artist. Rosenzweig primarily composes music for voice, percussion, and electronics. His work has been presented nationally as well as in international exhibitions, including the CAFAM Biennial, Beijing (2014) and the Moscow International Biennale for Young Art (2012). As a solo performer, he has performed widely in the San Francisco Bay Area, including The Luggage Store, the Mind Gaze Hut, and the San Francisco Community Music Center. In 2015, Rosenzweig co-curated Situational Music, a concert program hosted at The Exploratorium, San Francisco. He earned a BA from Tulane University, New Orleans, LA and an MFA in Electronic Music and Recording Media from Mills College, Oakland, CA.