Oxford Rainforest IV project

Graphical user interface, text Description automatically generated In early 2022 we reimagined a version of David Tudor’s Rainforest IV, after an invitation from artist Jesse Darling to interact with her Modern Art Oxford exhibition No Medals, No Ribbons. The work involved creating and hanging 12 'sculptural loudspeakers' as per the original David Tudor score, that were hung around the upper main gallery of Modern Art Oxford, through which the sounds of rainforest are diffused - - What is left then is for the listener to roam the space integrating the sound of each object into the total sound environment. Listening to each object emphasizes its sound over all the others. This process shapes the sounds of Rainforest. The audience actively participates in composing the piece.




1st February 2022


Modern Art Oxford and the Music Faculty’s EMPRes group, invite composers and sound artists to perform and interact with Gravity Road (2020) an ambitious steel sculpture

that will be installed at Modern Art Oxford in the main galleries, during Jesse Darling’s solo exhibition: No Medals No Ribbons, 5 March – 1 May 2022

Darling’s practice explores the precarious and arbitrary nature of dominant narratives about the world and our lives together. The artist gives new context to ordinary objects to make them appear strange, uncanny even, inviting us to look upon materials, histories, and mythologies anew.

As part of Jesse’s exhibition, Modern Art Oxford invites composers and sound artists to propose a performance that responds to Darling’s practice, and the gallery have invited EMPRes to collaborate.

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Description automatically generatedThe gallery is offering participants rare access to the Gravity Road sculpture when the gallery is closed on Mondays through the month of March, to interact with, explore, agitate, and record the objects; creating new works for a live performance and recording on 29th April 2022.

Through early discussions with Jesse Darling, EMPRes would like to take inspiration from David Tudor’s experimental composition/installation Rainforest (1968>) to help shape a response.

EMPRes will hold an initial workshop titled Microphones and Loudspeakers as Musical Instruments on Monday 28thFebruary, to explore the specific technologies and techniques of Rainforest. As said, we need only take inspiration; the response is open to interpretation. We will look at how to create our own ‘sculptural loudspeaker’, using sound transducers, and how to perform through, or compose for the medium of this new instrument. These instruments will be installed as part of Jesse’s exhibition later in April.

If you are interested in being involved with this project; speak with your compositional tutor about the possibility of submitting this work as part of your electroacoustic portfolio.

There will be a final installation and performance of the new work(s) in the large gallery in the final week of April, with a planned performance evening on the 29th April 2022.

To express interest in participation, contact Daniel Hulme.

Maximum 8 participants!




WORKSHOP: Monday 28th February: 2:45 – 5pm:  DAH.

Microphones and Loudspeakers as Musical Instruments

Initial open workshop to explore how we might create our own Rainforest inspired installation/performance, and the technologies/techniques used.

March/April (Mondays – gallery closed to the public, time TBC (likely afternoon)

We will have access to the sculpture and large gallery space on the following days:

7th March; 14th March; 21st March; 28th March; 4th April; 11th April; 18th April; 25th April 

April – final installation and performance

Installation open to the public for one week beginning 25th April.

Final performance Friday 29th April.




Wider Reading and Reference: