The Harpo Marx Free-Jazz Jamboree, 2000 - 2001
Multi-channel audio/video installation played from 6 synchronized DVD’s on (6) 20” monitors, (6) mdf pedestal w/ built-in speakers, (20) raw speakers, sync-unit
Running time: 5:00
The Harpo Marx Free Jazz Jamboree is inspired by the screen persona of 20th Century icon and clown extraordinaire, Harpo Marx. Though Harpo spent much of his adult life before the camera, he never uttered a word on film—yet he was able to communicate, through non-verbal sound, music and pantomime, more succinctly than his brother Groucho, whose persona was rooted in semantic play. The HMFJJ explores non-verbal sound and gesture as primary forms of communication, as well as the relationship of music and sound to Cinema. A connection is drawn to the transgressive, anti-establishment, spontaneous jazz form born in the early 1960’s, and emphasis is given to the development of a pure “sound language”, free of words but nonetheless full of meaning and expression.