- For Teachers
I am translating the description of an art project called "Subway" and badly need help of native English speakers.
Could you please check the text (below) and tell what corrections are needed (vocabulary, grammar, punctuation, style, etc.).
Help is greatly appreciated!
PS: We are a group of artists. We live and work in a relatively small city in the northern part of Russia. This city is also the capital of an autonomous district. So, in a dull concrete passage going through a residential building we installed concealed speakers which fill the space with quiet sounds of subway. Now we need to put a bilingual description plate on the wall, and the English text should look very English :)
Every time I was passing through the concrete passage I asked myself: is it possible to make it more friendly, to add a new context to the space.
Sound installation, as an interdisciplinary form of contemporary art, is based on two main elements — time and sound, while space is kept visually intact. The message is transmitted by sound which alters one’s spatial perception, shapes and transforms the place.
The 15 minutes long “audiopicture” depicts a trip: the listener enters the subway, moves through a number of areas — lobby, stations, passages — familiarizes themselves with some peculiar details of the underground life, meets several characters — trains, passengers, a child, heels, a woman with a phone, a beggar, a musician, and finally is left with their own thoughts, brought by a lonely melody.
Subway was chosen as the subject not incidentally: the passage itself reminds a subway station. Moreover, Syktyvkar is an oxymoron-like city: provincial and capital at the same time, but it is unlikely for it to obtain underground railway — this characteristic feature of a major capital city — in the foreseeable future. Subway sounds will help city-folk cope with this sad given(ness?).
Furthermore, the installation gives rise to thinking of development of contemporary art in Syktyvkar, of the city’s status as a capital, of the citizens’ self-identity, and also of ways to reform urban environment with the aim of making it less monotonous and more comfortable for local residents and tourists.
Anyone entering the “subway” is welcome to suggest their own interpretation. While an unwitting passer-by, even taking no notice of the sound, becomes a direct participant of the narrative.
One of the main goals of the installation (and of contemporary art in general) is to amaze people, help them easier accept the unconventional and unfamiliar, thus reducing mutual suspicion and tension in the society.