Tuesday, August 05, 2008
Runājošie akmeņi, continued
So if any of our faithful (and bored) readers checked, they would have found that "Runājošie akmeņi" means "Speaking Stones." This was a public art piece set up in one of the downtown squares, with about eight different video projections of faces on various boulders, each a different character talking about Latvia or telling a story. Some of them were a little hard to hear, but when concentrating, your correspondent could get the gist of what they were talking about. One example: "Why do we sing? Latvians know to sing, like salmon know to swim up a stream." And, in fact, each of the stones told its story on a loop, but then somehow every once in a while they would all sync up and sing one of the most well-known Latvian folk songs in unison, which got many of the viewers singing along as well. While the video projection trick is done more famously by Tony Oursler, the public nature of this piece was a nice touch. Also, the use of stones seemed to speak to the Latvian love of nature. It might have been better were it "Talking Trees" rather than "Speaking Stones," but then they might have had to chop down trees to bring into the city square, which would not have gone over well.