Of all the tortures, to put it lightly, of elevator-sharing (awkward eye contact, microscopic talk, the dreaded cougher), the music may be enemy number one. Asian Arts Initiative (AAI) understands the pain, and is flipping it on its head with a new exhibit, “Really Good Elevator Music.”
The project, headed by AAI artist-in-residence Yowei Shaw, turns an elevator into a pop-up installation, where office-goers and art lovers can change how they view passive time — the habitual commute becoming an experience. Collaborators on the project include Steven Dufala (formerly of Man Man) and a slew of other Philly artists. Their two-minute tracks are an experiment in found sound, field recordings and music, with the hope of promoting active listeners and an active community. Expect to hear heart-warming, thought-provoking and light-hearted pieces piped in through the PA, with tracks ranging from a recorded discussion with men to take shelter at the Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission to a soundbite of eighth graders rehearsing their Miley Cyrus-themed graduation video.
The project is running now through March 31st in the Wolf Building elevators, at 340 North 12th Street. Shaw will host a listening party on March 14th that features the music and video reactions from participants. That takes place at the Asian Arts Initiative, at 1219 Vine Street. For more information and to listen to some of the tracks, go here.