For a week in April 2006, greyworld transformed the largest shopping centre in Paris, Forum Des Halles into a giant sound sculpture, entitled Shopping.
The intention was to create a new shopping experience: a monumentalisation of consumerism through the medium of sound.
The work of art took place in a 700m2 shopping area and presented the visitor with ten gold framed speakers arranged throughout the space. Each speaker played the sound of a very specific area of the centre, for example “Table 6, McDonald’s, level B, 3.05 p.m. to 5.33pm”, or “Escalator, level D, 12.05 am to 2.24 p.m.” Two of the speakers played specially recorded musak, with the last speaker playing no sound; this was simply marked “Now.”
Visitors could explore the large space, mixing and blending the sounds as they walked, in effect creating a personal and unique composition as they moved. Musak is a sound-genre we have always been interested in and one we explore in our earliest CD release, Radio Moonlight. We used the musak as a canvas, on top of which the other sounds were layered. We felt that musak was an excellent point of departure – music reduced to its minimum, designed to be listen to but only to fill space – a form of aural wallpaper.