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Dale Berning

At the top of a carpeted staircase in a Georgian country home a blue wooden rocking horse stands completely still in front of a closed window with a view out onto the green hills and trees and fields beyond. A child rides a stationary wooden horse and travels to faraway places without ever leaving the security of his room.
The movement of a rocking horse is similar to that of a cradle, or a swing, or a lullaby. Its about being quiet, its about balance, its about being at home and thinking of elsewhere The Horse Stories is the soundtrack to Going places sitting down, a film by Hiraki Sawa, commissioned by the Hayward Gallery and Bloomberg London, for Waterloo Sunset, the Dan Graham Pavilion at the Hayward in November 2004. It is a piece about make-believe journeys to far-away places (at the tips of your fingers, between the cracks in the floor at your feet, on the edge and behind the door, right here where you are, close-by...)

For the soundtrack I used sounds belonging to the country house and garden in which Sawa filmed - water running in the upstairs bathroom; rain water dripping on the stones outside the kitchen door, sparkling water in a glass on the table, the wind-chime and the clock and the record player... And then the sounds of music boxes being played - one elaborate antique music-box with bells the shape of bees and a miniature hollow drum, and other simple music boxes, playing only one tune each, tiny naked metallic combs and drums and handles.

At the core of all my sound work lies a deep interest in ideas of aliveness, of space and the awareness of time passing, of breathing and being still and of listening. And of the possibility of grace.


The Horse Stories - Dale Berning - LP

£10.00 U.K.
£12.50 Europe
£15.50 R.O.W.