John Schlesinger

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Frankensteinway with Taji Ra'oof Nahl (TR7) 2023-present

A dilapidated Steinway piano in my living room has been heavily ‘prepared’ internally (ala John Cage or Ben Patterson)

with surgical forceps and other medical instruments to dramatically modify its sound. Physically it has been transformed with

scrap stainless steel, video projectors and monitors, photography, aluminum rod, laboratory clamps and over 200 linear feet of

salvaged commercial neon, all streaming from its open guts and attaching to the upper walls and ceiling. Much as Mary Shelley’s

Frankenstein was created by surgically cobbled together corpses, our piano mimics this experiment-gone-wrong with laboratory apparatus,

beakers and flashing neon, giving the illusion of science temporarily being in control.

Functionally, Frankensteinway serves as the hinge or pivot transforming a living room re-purposed into a hub or locus for musicians

to meet, collaborate and take risks as an auditory response to the installation. The performances are videotaped and photographed, and

this documentation is then woven back into the work adding layers of history. Thus, this perpetually unfinished installation

continually grows throughout the house and mutates over time as musicians perform and as TR7 and Schlesinger add to it physically.

The work auto-modifies itself.

The list of performers so far include: Totally Automatic, Ihba Baskette, Anthony Baynes Sr., Jason Carr, Mark Dilks, Shakoor Hakeem,

Eugene Lew, June Lopez, Julius Masri, Mio Nakai, Andrew Norris, Ryoko Ohara, Kamau Amu Patton, Bob Schlesinger, Sequoyah, Nate Totushek

Bryant Eugene Vazquez, Shaun SkyWalker WalkIrgshizz and Brent Zwesiman.

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