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The Mattress Factory is an artist-centered museum, international residency program and renowned producer and presenter of installation art. We say “yes” to artists, offering time and space to dream and realize projects in our hometown, Pittsburgh, PA. We invite audiences from around the world and around the corner to step inside, immerse and connect with the artistic process.

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Rolf Julius

Music for a Garden

1997

My work is as high as the building, and fills the entire lot adjacent to it. In this way, I have created rooms. As the visitor moves from one room to another--either vertically or horizontally--the experience of the work changes.

This play is a reflection on the (im)possibility of accepting diversity and the other. The fragmented body of the neoplasm—the fruit of unstable conditions—overcomes barriers, loves and denies itself and others, wanders around, forgetting its profession. It frequently and with pleasure divides, goes through dangerous palpation, questions the possibility of contact with the experience of the other. Poorly brought up but very successful, it invites us to a trans-species transition.

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Rolf Julius designed Music for a Garden to be heard within the Garden designed by Winifred Lutz. Three pairs of speakers, mounted high and low on the Mattress Factory's exterior walls, are aimed in various directions. From each speaker comes a distinct element of the music Julius has composed for the space. The three elements of music that together comprise the work are Music for the Air, Drum Piece, and Song.

Exhibition

Permanent Installation
About The Artist

Rolf Julius was born in Germany in 1939 and studied fine art in Bremen. In the mid 1970s he began using sound alongside his visual practice. Later he moved to Berlin and became an important figure in that city’s budding sound art scene. In 1980 Julius’ pioneering work “Dike Line” was presented at the “Fϋr Augen Und Ohren” exhibition alongside work by John Cage. He has created some of the most meaningful and moving works in the grey area between music and art, between sound and silence, slowly emerging as one of the most important and influential sound artists of our time. Whether using photographs, ink drawings, audio compositions, or subtle and sometimes almost hidden outdoor installations, Rolf Julius’ works serve as catalyst, increasing our awareness of the great beauty of the world that surrounds us.

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