"Sonic Bed_Marfa" (2008)
by Kaffe Matthews at Ballroom Marfa
I asked a stranger lying in Sonic Bed_Marfa, a sculpture by artist Kaffe Matthews, to describe the sensation in two words. He said simply, "Sonic Massage." Non-profit arts space Ballroom Marfa is currently showing Sonic Bed_Marfa in their section on the third floor of No Soul For Sale. The piece was originally commissioned for their 2008 exhibition on sound art and public space, "The Marfa Sessions" curated by Regine Basha, Rebecca Gates and Lucy Raven. The work is one in a series of Sound Beds that take their materials and bedding design from their local surroundings. Sound Bed_Marfa is constructed out of wood gathered from around the Marfa area and its bright yellow bedding is inspired by the color used to paint houses in neighboring Ojinaga. The color yellow also figures into the title of the composition "Yellow" by Matthews which effectively encircles the visitor and vibrates the bed through a 12 channel sound system hidden underneath the mattress and in the side panels.