Artpark's Percussion garden
Located in the Lower Park (see map)
The Percussion Garden is closed for the season. Scheduled to re-open May 2017.
A Percussion Garden by two of
the country's most prominent percussion artists has been installed in the lower
park near the Emerald Grove stage including: Swing Set and Chime Tree by David Cossin (Bang on a Can) and Earth
Drums by Glenn Kotche (Wilco). The 2016 Season featured a temporary free standing instrument: Scorpiotron by
Each element of the Percussion Garden presents playful opportunities for visitors to explore the different
ways to interact and produce sound while posing curious questions on the nature
of a performance, music-making and relationships within the natural environment
of the park.
The Percussion Garden has been made possible by a generous gift from the Charles and Mary Bauer Foundation.
Swing Set by David Cossin
Chime Tree by David Cossin
Earth Drums by Glenn Kotche
Make it Rain TeeterTotter by Julian Majewski
Lawn Chair by Tanis Winslow, Stephanie Kowalski, Jasper Reese and The Adventure Department
This one of a kind percussion sculpture by Dave Hind was featured at Artpark during the 2016 summer only. On summer weekends, UB Percussion Students improvised with the "Scorpiotron," allowing visitors to join in.
Music in the Woods
2016 Music in the Woods season curated by Tom Kolor (UB Percussion Ensemble) & David Cossin (Bang on a Can)
Sponsored by Calspan
FREE Sunday Series: Musical performances are presented in the scenic Lower Park Emerald Grove area, overlooking the Niagara River.
2017 Schedule TBA
More info on creators & artists
by David Cossin
"In creating works for this Percussion Garden, I wanted to create
instruments and experiences that could be powered by various elements. Some of the instruments are people
powered. They have a definitive
beginning and end, or on/off switch.
This particular instrument is powered by nature; specifically wind and
rain. There is no definite human
influenced beginning and end to the sound experiences of this instrument. Rather the sound experience is at the behest
of the natural." David Cossin
by David Cossin
SwingSet is an interactive sonic installation piece whose goal is to
try to break the barrier between performer and audience and to present the
question of what constitutes a performance. I want to invite the creativity of
the perceiver by being both the performer and the listener. One of the main
points to investigate is the idea of relationships. SwingSet has been conceived
to explore the relationship between sound, time and space. The perception of
the environment, the texture of the sounds and their timing, the visual impact
of the shadows will be enriched and altered by the choice of an awakened
participant. Can a specific sound take on the identity of an interval of time?
The space and the structure of the piece will constantly be altered by the
initiative (or the lack of initiative) of the public.
How to Play: SwingSet is an instrument and a composition that could
take place at any moment and be performed by anyone (a never-ending piece).
SwingSet consists of 10 large suspended aluminum pipes. There are clocks
attached to each set, which consists of two pipes. The color of the suspended
pipe (white or black/left or right) corresponds with the colored points on the
clock. When the hand of the clock touches the colored points you may choose to
strike (or not strike) the pipe at any dynamic (loud or soft).
David Cossin is a specialist in new and
experimental music, David has worked across a broad spectrum of
musical and artistic forms to incorporate new media with percussion.
David Cossin has recorded
and performed internationally with composers and ensembles including
the Bang on a Can All-Stars, Steve Reich and Musicians, Philip Glass, Yo-Yo
Ma, Meredith Monk, Tan Dun, Cecil Taylor, Talujon
Percussion Quartet, and the trio, Real Quiet. Numerous theater
projects include collaborations with Blue Man Group, Mabou
Mines, and director Peter Sellars. David was featured as the
percussion soloist in Tan Dun's Grammy and Oscar winning score to Ang Lee's
film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
By Glenn Kotche
An interactive experiment in archaic percussion and communication
As a percussion-obsessed high school freshman, I remember sitting in
the school library reading the only book on percussion available, James Blades'
Percussion Instruments and Their History. For some reason a paragraph on
the origin of membrane drums stuck in my mind all these years. Blades
posited the notion that the earliest membrane drums were most likely animal
skins staked and stretched over holes in the ground for drying purposes that
were then accidentally discovered to be useful for sound making.
I thought it might also be fun to incorporate the practice of using
drums as a means of communication as well. This practice was particularly
common along the Congo River in Africa where the high and low sounds of
membrane drums would imitate the native tongues allowing drummers to send
complex messages from village to village.
For this interactive exhibit, we've assembled two sets of drums - each
with one low-pitched drum and one higher-pitched drum. I invite you to
communicate between the two sets of drums via Morse code. For our
purposes the low drum will be dashes while the high drum will be dots.
Please refer to the charts for explanations on how Morse code works and for
assistance in sending a simple message - or just enjoy banging on a buried
drum. Please do not use the drums as a trampoline or table for drinks
Glenn Kotche is best known for his Grammy winning
percussion work with the band Wilco. He
has treated the drum set as a multiple percussion instrument including homemade
instruments, pitched percussion, and various found objects. His other work
includes writing music for Kronos Quartet, So Percussion, the Silk Road
Ensemble, Bang On A Can All-Stars, and many more. Glenn Kotche: http://glennkotche.com/about
By Dave Hind
Dave Hind was
born in Hamilton, Ontario. He is a graduate of the University of Western
Ontario - Visual Art Program and resides in Brantford, Ontario. He is the
Co-founder of the TH & B and the Founder of the Metal Quilting Society art
collectives. His installation works are part of public, private and corporate
collections in both Canada and the United States and he has
exhibited nationally and abroad since the outset of his career in the
early 1990s. Dave's artistic practice is grounded in the reclamation of
materials. The interaction of the industrial and natural recur in the
materials, processes, and images he uses and explores. http://www.davehind.com/
Julian Michael Majewski
unique teeter-totter largely constructed out of recycled, repurposed, and
scavenged materials. The piece was made to belong within the public space for
people to use and interact with. In respect to viral culture and social
networking, social indicators are provided in an attempt to direct the flow of
images videos etc of those who interact with the piece.
OCAD University's graduate, Julian's work largely employs the use of prolonged
interactions with an object that I have created, further transforming it and
facilitating an adaption towards a new use. The common thread in my work is my
own material investigation and experimentation. The aim is for a piece to have
the appearance of functionality, made with raw materials; further becoming
isolated as a product of fine art through its transformation and the
association with artistic intervention. In that manner, my work could be viewed
as creative visuals that depict contemporary inquiries. http://www.arthappens.ca/teetertotter-2013.html
by Tanis Winslow, Stephanie Kowalski, Jasper Reese, and The Adventure
Lawn Chair is an interactive collaboration and site specific work that
is meant to encourage the viewer to sit and relax in a seat made of sod. In making this work, comfort was at the core
of construction. These sod sofas act as
a cozy nest for those wishing to take a nap or as a meeting place for friends
to sit and relax. Meditate, read a book
or rest, this lawn furniture will provide the loveliest of places for your
person. Enjoy the sounds of the Chime
Tree overhead as you gaze upon the Niagara River.
Tanis Winslow has been the Director of Visual Arts and Family Programs
for 10 years. She is a photographer,
a painter, a sculptor, an artwork installer, a teacher, and a mother of
two. Her work has been featured in
galleries of NYC, Buffalo, NY and Niagara Falls, NY such as, the Albright Knox
Art Gallery, Big Orbit, Burchfield Penney, Castellani
Art Museum, CEPA Gallery, Gallery MC, and more.
Kolor, UB Percussion Ensemble, Artpark Music in the Woods series curator
graduation from the Juilliard School in 1997, percussionist Tom Kolor became
one of New York's most in demand chamber musicians. Engagements with the
Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Continuum, Da Capo Chamber Players,
Ensemble 21, the Group for Contemporary Music, Manhattan Sinfonietta, New York
New Music Ensemble, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Newband, Speculum Musicae, and
Sospeso led to collaborations with such composers and conductors as Louis
Andriessen, Milton Babbitt, Pierre Boulez, Elliott Carter, George Crumb, James
Dillon, Mario Davidovsky, Tan Dun, John Eaton, David Felder, Brian Ferneyhough,
Philippe Hurel, Oliver Knussen, Robert Kraft, Tania Leon, Alvin Lucier, Steven
Mackey, Tristan Murial, Wayne Peterson, George Perle, Steve Reich, Christopher
Rouse, Frederic Rzewski, Ralph Shapey, Essa Pekka Salonen, James Tenney,
Chinary Ung, Charles Wuorinen, Julia
Wolfe, Christian Wolff, Iannis Xenakis,
and John Zorn.
Since 1995, he has been a member of Talujon Percussion, presenting hundreds of
concerts throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. Talujon has given
countless world premieres and has made a significant contribution to the
percussion quartet repertoire.
Currently, Kolor is an Associate Professor of Music at the University at
Buffalo SUNY, where he directs the UB Percussion Ensemble, UB Contemporary
Ensemble, oversees the Percussion Department and performs regularly with the
faculty ensemble, Slee Sinfonietta. His first solo CD, American
Masterpieces for Solo Percussion which features works by Babbitt and Cage
was released by Albany Recordings. Recently released is American
Masterpieces for Solo Percussion Volume II, which includes works by Wuorinen,
Shapey, Wolff, and Feldman. In addition, he appears on over fifty commercial
recordings for labels such as Albany, Bridge, Capstone, CRI, Deutsche
Grammophone, Innova, Koch, Naxos, New World, North/South Consonance, Tzadik,