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Prix 1987 - 2007

ORF Oberösterreich

Intercourse - The File Cabinet Project
Monty Cantsin, Istvan Kantor

The File Cabinet Project investigates the sculptural system and kinesonic mechanism of information storage furniture.

The digital age didn't kill the old hardware of infor mation technology, and the metal office furniture is now part of the new electronic communication net work.There are file cabinets in every office all around the world.
While in the old times all data was stored in the metal hardware of this specific furniture, today file cabinets are extended with computers and are inter connected through the electronic system of commu nication. Information kept in the cabinet drawers is transferred to the computer and distributed through Cyberspace. Files are accessible through the opening and closing of the cabinet drawers.The kinetic move ments of the drawers produce mechanical sounds. The single monolithic file cabinets are linked togeth er by computers and integrated into a giant network that functions as both kinesonic mega-machine and world wide monument serving the entire planet with information.
In January 1993 I opened my new office, Puppet Gov ernment, located at 372 Richmond Street West, in Toronto. My interest in file cabinets developed at around this time, and, as it happened on so many previous occasions, it was induced by chance. I found a four drawer lateral cabinet at the freight elevator waiting to be thrown in the garbage. I moved it immediately into my office and at that moment I knew it was the object I was waiting for. For the first time in my life I looked at a file cabinet as someone would look at an alien device with astonishing inter est. I started pulling, pushingthe drawers in and out and I was fully amazed by the noise they made.
I have been using scrapmetal junk for performances and installations for many years collecting them from junk yards and from the streets, but, for some reason, I've never paid enough attention to the file cabinet. It took a special moment to discover the nature of this perfect noise instrument and potential monument.