Listening to Art

05.05: Richard Serra, Tilted Spheres


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Listening to Art, by William Denton.

Volume five, number five: Tilted Spheres by Richard Serra.

Hello, and welcome to Listening to Art. I’m William Denton.

Tilted Spheres is an enormous sculpture in Terminal One at Toronto Pearson International Airport. It’s past the security gates, so only international travellers who are boarding at gates in Pier F will see it and be able walk between its four sections. It’s so big and heavy that it was laid into the floor when the terminal was under construction and then the walls and ceiling were built around it.

Do not confuse this with Tilted Arc, an even larger sculpture Serra made for a public plaza in Manhattan. It was installed in 1981, intensely disliked by some people, and removed in 1989 after a trial, never to be seen again.

This is a sculpture, made of weatherproof steel, 1210 cm wide by 430 cm high by 1390 cm deep.

Now let’s listen to Tilted Spheres by Richard Serra, recorded at Toronto Pearson International Airport, in Toronto, on 22 May 2018.

Waveform of the field recording.

That was Tilted Spheres by Richard Serra. I hope you enjoyed listening to it as much as I did.

For more information and links to things I’ve mentioned, please visit listeningtoart.org.

Listening to Art is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Bibliography

All web sites accessed as of date of publication.

Hume, Christpher. “Toronto’s New Arrival.” Metropolis. https://www.metropolismag.com/uncategorized/torontos-new-arrival/.

Meandering Mercedes. “Looking for Richard Serra in Toronto Pearson International Airport.” Meandering Mercedes. https://meanderingmercedes.com/richard-sierra-in-toronto-pearson-airport/.

Toronto Pearson. “Tilted Spheres.” Pearson Airport. https://www.torontopearson.com/en/while-you-are-here/toronto-airport-services/tilted-spheres.

Wikipedia, s.v. “Richard Serra,” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Serra.

Wikipedia, s.v. “Tilted Arc,” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tilted_Arc.