FLOAT! Thinktank 21
During his residency, Thom Kubli worked on an EMPAC commission that invited the audience to experience a session in a unique flotation tank. The intent of the piece was to create what the artist calls an “anti-environment,” a physical experience that stands in radical contradiction to those we encounter in everyday life, where we feel the tug of gravity and spend most of our time on dry land. This installation was premiered at EMPAC’s Dancing on the Ceiling exhibition. FLOAT! Thinktank 21 was comprised of a flotation tank, a sound composition, and an archive of audio performances by the artist and a context table filled with books by a variety of philosophers and inspiring thinkers. Drawing from experiments in brain research conducted by John C. Lilly in the 1950s, the piece allowed the audience to listen to audio recordings on politics and zero gravity that Kubli made after floating in the tank in the days leading up to the exhibition opening. A select number of viewers could also float in the isolation tank, custom fit with an underwater sound system.
Berlin-based composer and artist Thom Kubli has exhibited and presented his work in the US and Europe, including ICA (London, UK), Akademie der Künste (Berlin, Germany), Ars Electronica (Linz, Austria), and The New Museum (NYC).