From Dawn to Dusk: The Bird of Paradise

Olaf Nicolai
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01.10.2021

In 2019, artist Olaf Nicolai initiated an enactment of the Walter Marchetti piece The Bird of Paradise. Hunting in the City of 1977. For one day, the performer Miles Sjögren played music with an orchestra of bird whistles according to the textual instructions of Marchetti in the public urban space in Dresden. He recorded the audio performance with a tape recorder and the piece was then played in the The Whole Life: Archives and Reality exhibition.

‘Leave your home with a cool head and carrying a briefcase full of birdcalls of the kind used by hunters, as well as a portable tape recorder slung across your back on a carrying strap. You will use it at the proper time to play a tape, which has also been placed in the briefcase. Once outside you begin your performance of The Hunt by crossing over to the sidewalk on a far side of the street with respect to the building you have just left. After observing this building for several minutes you will then begin to walk.’

Excerpt from Walter Marchetti’s instructions for The Bird of Paradise. Hunting in the City.

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