Rising 5th (Re-staging of a test for an unrealised memorial to Benjamin Britten) is a video work and sound installation around the story of the architect, H T ‘Jim’ Cadbury Brown’s proposed memorial to Benjamin Britten. The memorial was to be a huge piece of wood standing on Aldeburgh beach with two holes in the top designed to sing out the two notes from Britten’s opera, Peter Grimes, when the wind blew fiercely enough through them. Like a huge wind instrument on the beach playing to the residents of Aldeburgh it would remind them of the darkness that lies beyond the horizon, out at sea.
During the design process for this memorial Jim needed to determine what size holes would be drilled in the wood to create the right notes. To do this he strapped two organ pipes to a car and drove it up and down the Aldeburgh – Thorpeness Road to see at what speed the notes would sound.
The film is a re-staging of this experiment. The memorial was never constructed but the story surrounding it is intriguing, if quite absurd. Britten used ‘sound as found’ in his compositions alongside traditional orchestration so perhaps would have seen this as a fitting tribute.
The sound installation re-imagined the sounding of the memorial in a storm, and was made for the South Lookout tower on Aldeburgh beach to accompany the video piece.
Rising 5th (Re-staging of a test for an unrealised memorial to Benjamin Britten) was shown as part of SNAP 2013. To celebrate the Benjamin Britten Centenary, artists from previous SNAP exhibitions were invited to contribute works related to or inspired by Britten.
SNAP 2013 ran from June 8th – June 30th 2013 at Snape Maltings, Suffolk
Participating artists included Glenn Brown, May Cornet, Benedict Drew, Cerith Wyn Evans, Mark Fuller, Ryan Gander, Maggi Hambling, Scott King, Emily Richardson, Abigail Lane, Simon Liddiment, Sarah Lucas, Julian Simmons, Cally Spooner and Juergen Teller.