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dawn chorus :: marcus coates

first shown at
BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead
14 February - 18 March 2007

from the press release:
Dawn Chorus is an ambitious exhibition comprising films of 19 singers that uncannily recreate birdsong in their ‘natural habitats’. The individuals are located in various situations such as an underground car-park, an osteopathic clinic and a bath-tub, the project is as much a portrait of British idiosyncrasies as it is of the natural world. The films are hung on screens in the gallery according to the position of the birds when they were recorded, creating an immersive soundscape for visitors to the exhibition.

Dawn Chorus was produced by Picture This, a Bristol-based commissioning agency and was premiered at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. The project was supported by the Wellcome Trust. Picture This worked with Marcus Coates and birdsong expert and wildlife sound recordist Geoff Sample over a three year period to support all aspects of the project, from scientific research and field work, to sourcing and filming singers and presenting the beautiful, natural phenomenon of the dawn chorus as a contemporary art exhibition.

A personal account of the field work

Alec Finlay interview with Marcus

More on Marcus' work from Picture This

Interview with Marcus in the Guardian

Extracts from the field recordings mixed down to stereo (2-4Mb mp3 files):

Brada 4:03am

Brada 4:09am

Ford 4:16am

Ford 4:27am

Ford 4:48am