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“Transverse Temporal Gyrus” by Animal Collective and Danny Perez

"Tranverse Temporal Gyrus" performance

“Neither live concert nor art exhibit, Transverse Temporal Gyrus is a site-specific sonic installation featuring Baltimore-hailing band Animal Collective and experimental artist Danny Perez as part of the Guggenheim Museum’s 50th anniversary celebration.
Through sound and video projection, the environment of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed building becomes psychedelic, distorted and luminous, all designed to pique the senses. Band members and performers used props and costumes to add to the ambiance of the looping pre-recorded music. “The core elements and colors are worked into the piece in order to unite this room of sound with the inside of your brain,” asserted Animal Collective.” 1.

“This performance piece transformed the museum’s rotunda into a kinetic, psycheVisitirs exploring the space, letting 
themselves immergedelic environment. Transverse Temporal Gyrus featured original recorded music composed specifically for the event along with video projections, costumes, and props, rendering the band members and performers into intense, visual abstractions. During the evening, guests were invited to freely explore the space in order to fully immerse themselves in the environment created by Animal Collective and Danny Perez.” (2.) As in The Weather Project, the audience allowed themselves to be immersed, fully surrendering to the psychedelic environment.

This work shows resemblence to Beatles Electroniques in conjuntion of pop music with art and video. Laurie Anderson’s performances like Mister Heartbreak resemble Tranverse Temporal Gyrus even more, as the actual band or artist joins sonic, visual, and performative elements into a unified, integrated whole. Both Animal Collective and Laurie Anderson succesfully combined art and avant-garde pop music in a way that appealed to a relatively broad audience.

The collaboration between musician and artist bridges the communication gap that exists between art and its potential audience. In Toward a Third Culture: Being in Between, Victoria Vesna argues that artists, natural scientists and literary intellectuals should work together to gain an atmosphere of collaboration and mutual respect that facilitates development (AEM 275). However, the problem of scarcely reaching a broader audience is overlooked in Vesna’s writing. Luckily, Animal Collective and Danny Perez provide us with a solution; experimental electronic visual art and pop musical artists can successfully join forces to significant acclaim in both large concert halls and museums.

Another band that is linked to the New York art-scene is Yeasayer, their video for Ambling Alp shows us where Animal Collective and Danny Perez got some of their inspiration. Yeasayer also performed at the Gugenheim NY.

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