NO More Heroes
A Milanese Foley
William S. Burroughs in an experimental text from 1962, championed the misuse of common objects in order to create political actions, incite riots and demonstrations as subversion in the everyday through performance.
For NO more heroes, Director and Designer Nelly Ben Hayoun with the participation of Foley Artist Sue Harding, are recording Milan Design Week’s “background noise” and manufacture processes and actions to engage the audience with the experience of listening and perverting Design. Frozen romaine lettuce, gelatin, corn starch and coconut shells are used to do so…
[What is Foley? Foley is the making, design and performance of everyday and background sounds, usually happening in the filmmaking discipline. These reproduced sounds can be anything from the swishing of clothing and footsteps to squeaky doors and breaking glass. It helps to create a sense of reality within a scene.]
See pictures of the performance at Hacked Exhibition, as part of Milan Furniture Fair 2012, commissioned by La Rinascente and Beatrice Gallilée here
NO More Heroes’ Composition statements:
1- For a Design Deconstruction
We propose to deconstruct Design. We question its context and its network. We develop a performative fiction, We disassemble design into function and interaction. We process its background noise. We select industrialization processes and Design’s functions, edit and choreograph Design-Events.
2- Mise en Abyme of the design experience
We question Design Set up. We respond to design works in Milanese galleries (Chairs, Tables, Shelves, Bed etc…) through recordings and a performance. We then play it back in a Foley sound studio. We work with theatrical methodologies. It is like commedia dell’arte. We consider improvisation as a creative design component. We believe that design should be embedded in a physical experience, something that lasts in your memory similar to seeing a painting and remembering the tone of it. We question displays in Design exhibitions and we wonder and experiment with other disciplines and their mode of representation. So let’s follow John Cage’s advices and “let’s put on a performance’ on design.
3- Design fiction and democratization
We question access to a design experience. We work with amateurs, pro-ams and experts to democratize it. We WANT tangible experiences. How can I experience the Barcelona Chair if I can’t sit on it or even consider buying it? How could someone buy the experience of it, the sound of it, the use of it, the shape of it?
We design with an existential attitude to democratize the experience. Our work aim to challenge power structures. It disclaims absurdity and boredom in the everyday and responds to it with passion, thrill and free will. There is ‘NO more HEROES’ as we can all generate new myths and experience them. Design should not serve reality with great zeal, but live to create its fiction. We aim to generate new forms of individual and social imaginings and actions.
4- Design Events as Scores
What are the conditions that make an event possible? Events are produced in a chaos, in a chaotic multiplicity, but only under conditions that a sort of screen intervenes.” Gilles Deleuze, The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque
Along with its complex vernacular resonances, the term event has a number of quite precise meanings in scientific, philosophical and historical discourses. ‘Everything that happens’ provides potential materials for a programmed chaos. We trigger interventions and then we record our ‘background noises’ in galleries. Through NO more Heroes we think that design can generate events, incite riots and demonstrations as subversion of the everyday through performance.
5- Design and craftsmanship/expert
We work with Foley Artist, Sue Harding, as if we were working with an aluminium caster building a rocket chair. We learn the Foley rules and we practice. Foley is the making, design and performance of everyday and background sounds, usually happening in the filmmaking discipline. These reproduced sounds can be anything from the swishing of clothing and footsteps to squeaky doors and breaking glass. They use Frozen romaine lettuce, gelatin, corn starch and coconut shells. It helps to create a sense of reality within a scene. As in Foley, we aim to enhance the auditory experience of design. Foley can also be used to cover up unwanted sounds captured on the set of a movie… Could we do the same in a design gallery? There are no more than 17 Foley artists in the UK…
NO more heroes: Milanese Foley is a Nelly Ben Hayoun Studio’ s production 2012
Commissioned by La Rinascente and curator Beatrice Galilée as part of ” Hacked exhibition: 100 hours of rebellious imagination”, Milan Furniture Fair
Production Manager for Nelly Ben Hayoun Studio: Maria Ines Chevallier
Composition’s Layout by Stuart Bannocks
With the participation and kind support of Foley Artists: Sue Harding, Julien Pirrie and David Poulton.
Many thanks to Goldcrest Studio in London (www.goldcrestpost.com), and Universal Sound Studio-Phillip Barrett (universalsound.co.uk)