In 2011, a friend gave Alison S. M. Kobayashi a wire recorder, a now obsolete form of audio technology that used steel wire for magnetic recordings. Included with the estate-sale find were two unlabeled spools, each dense with unidentified voices. As Kobayashi listened, characters and narratives emerged from the distortion, and, based on offhand comments about culture and holidays, she gradually traced these unmoored ghosts back to the early 1950s. They were the Newburges, a Jewish American family who lived on Long Island, and the older son David had recorded two of their gatherings. The decades-old sound became the basis forSay Something Bunny!, a performance that’s part one-woman show and part live documentary, as the audience joins in an excavation of this sonic artifact.
“For the past decade, I’ve been working with found material,” Kobayashi told Hyperallergic. “It’s often somewhat banal or something ordinary, or something that we all have. One of my first projects was collecting answering-machine tapes that people donated to thrift stores.”
That focus developed into the 2006 video Dan Carter, in which the artist performed as people leaving messages on a man’s machine. For the 2015 Personality Unlimited, she responded to a 1943 self-improvement book with new choreography, and the 2014 Mrs. Florence Hazel Davis Bland featured an interactive website that explored a woman’s life through her book collection.
While this previous work involved video and gallery installations, Say Something Bunny! is a two-act theatrical experience in which the audience sits at a circular table in the UNDO Project Space in Chelsea. It was first staged in 2016 at Toronto’s Gallery TPW, and is being performed in Manhattan through April 29. The shape of the table echoes the shape of the wire spools, and at every seat is a script for a character. There’s no actual participation, however, except Kobayashi speaking directly to attendees as if they were actors at a table read.
We are angry, frustrated, and in pain because of the violence and murder of Black people by the police because of racism. We are in the fight AGAINST RACISM. George Floyd was murdered, his life stolen. The Adafruit teams have specific actions we’ve done, are doing, and will do together as a company and culture. We are asking the Adafruit community to get involved and share what you are doing. The Adafruit teams will not settle for a hash tag, a Tweet, or an icon change. We will work on real change, and that requires real action and real work together. That is what we will do each day, each month, each year – we will hold ourselves accountable and publish our collective efforts, partnerships, activism, donations, openly and publicly. Our blog and social media platforms will be utilized in actionable ways. Join us and the anti-racist efforts working to end police brutality, reform the criminal justice system, and dismantle the many other forms of systemic racism at work in this country, read more @ adafruit.com/blacklivesmatter
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.