Brown Sound Kit

Martin Kersels


Installation, 85 x 60 x 82 cm.
Materials: Speaker, amplifier, equalizer, oscillator, fiberglass, carrying case, wood

Collection: Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Georges-Philippe and Nathalie Vallois .

His sculpture Brown Sound Kit, 1994, is a piece of sound equipment that emits low frequency infrasound waves, which causes those in its path to release the contents of their bowels—or more colloquially, to “shit themselves”. This kind of sound cannon has its roots in sonic weapons first developed by the Nazis for the purposes of crowd control, and purportedly also by the French authorities during the Paris riots of 1968. Utilising a speaker, an amplifier, an equaliser and an oscillator, all contained with a mobile yellow case, Brown Sound Kit works reflexively of the fact that experiments in weapons technology were also important in the development of sound systems for music. Whilst bringing some toilet humour to the gallery space, Brown Sound Kit brings visibility to issues of controlling bodies en masse. Brown Sound Kit is presented unplugged within exhibitions.

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