Life Boat Revery

Queenscliff, Victoria

Sound sculpture installation in a disused lifeboat shed on the Queenscliffe pier, near Melbourne Australia.

A Reverie is defined as a daydream, and also as a short musical piece that can send the listener into a state of daydreaming. A timber building with a convex curved ceiling and roof, the shed has an especially good acoustic. It was built on the water to facilitate the launching of lifeboats to rescue passengers from ships stricken in dangerous seas.

For the project, an organ was installed inside the shed, with pipes leading down through the floor to the waves. The waves pumped air into the pipes and created rhythmic ocean music in F minor.

Life Boat Reverie by Cameron Robbins

Life Boat Reverie by Cameron Robbins

The piece has a series of tuned organ pipes which are connected to the sea via long PVC plumbing tubes. The waves ener the bottoms of the tubes, pushing air up into the organ pipes and creating the sounds you hear. The Wind Powered Drawing Machine was constantly taking notes on the prevailing conditions of this mid winter art experiment.