Zissis Kotionis

26 October 2023


Aluminium, tin, string, wood. Dimensions variable Commissioned by LABoral Centro de Arte y Creación Industrial for “Climate Engines”, 2023

We are not familiar with the obvious fact that air, through breathing, is part of our body. As we inhale and exhale millions of particles are exchanged from one body to another. Through this common air – Merleau Ponty calls it “flesh” – a common body is formed, vulnerable to share viruses, DNA material or feelings of love, all floating in the air. We consider breathing as a mental expression and breathing also as an elementary act of communication. The Common Breathing Amplifier (CO.BR.A) is an installation of hanging funnels that function as megaphones to share human breath and the sound of human voices. People can gather and reach the funnels and as soon as they place their mouths in the hole, their breathing is heard from others in the space. All the breaths can be assembled as a total mass of sound that moves in space from one body to another. The COBRA installation could inspire collective sound performances as long as the exhibition takes place. In technical terms, the funnels are hung separately from the ceiling and a balancing mechanism with a thin wooden beam and ropes ensures that the spout can be adjusted in height to accommodate all users.