Sounding Door V2 is a special version of the installation, Sounding Door, specially designed for the Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe (ZKM) collection.

Sounding Door is an interactive sound art installation designed to turn any door into a unique musical instrument and a stage at once. Equipped with custom-designed electronics and software, the installation plays and composes sounds according to the door’s movements, that is, its position, speed and acceleration.

The installation was created in 2009 in Vilnius, Lithuania, as a part of the larger project, Talking Doors, which was supported by the national program “Vilnius European Cultural Capital 2009.” The project won a number of awards, one of which was Distinction in the Interactive Art category of Prix Ars Electronica 2010.

The installation’s author, Julijonas Urbonas, remarks that sound designers create the sounds of mobile phones, crispy corn flakes and even hairdryers, while apparently leaving such essential element of daily experience as the door without due attention. He also notices that sound design and architectural acoustics have become disciplines in their own right, and the sound of architecture itself is still rarely discussed. Inspired by these observations, he invited composers, musicians, sound designers and sound artists to contribute sound pieces that would consider the following question: “Why are we confined to choosing a door for our home space based only on the visual characteristics of the former and not, for instance, the specific sound of its hinges?”

Over 100 compositions – in the form of either linear playback files or specially programmed sound generating software – were submitted, then installed in Vilnius and later in Karlsruhe’s “sounding doors” and presented as “concerts” in the public space.

Current playlist of the door concerts, now being played at the ZKM entrance

1. Programmed piano piece by Adrien Garcia (FR/USA)
2. "Resonant Door" by Andrea Vigani (IT)
3. Untitled by Augustas Ribokas (LT)
4. "Vocalic" by Diego Dall'Osto (ES)
5. Spoken piece by Franziska Windisch (DE)
6. "Harfe" by Frauke Schmidt (DE)
7. "Creaking Door" by Julijonas Urbonas & Andrius Rugevičius (LT)
8. "Engine Simulator" by Vincent Wikstrom (DE)

Concept, design, electronics, programming: Julijonas Urbonas
Photography: Aistė Valiūtė and Daumantas Plechavičius

© 2012 Julijonas Urbonas

Video extract from the catalogue of the project "Open Doors" (2011) curated by Akvilė Eglinskaitė.