Sounds for Stairs


Sounds for Stairs, 2010
8 channel site specific sound installation for Box 13 Art Space, Houston, TX

Houston soundscapes animate the main staircase of Box13 for this interactive exhibit. Making the mundane whimsical and otherworldly, Dib’s installation defamiliarizes, and recontextualizes sounds to create a dynamic sonic postcard, orchestrated by the up and down movements of the visitors. The staircase turns the world inside out by bringing into the quiet gallery space reverberations, swishes and clatters that usually dwell outside. Blurring the boundaries between the constructed environment and nature, this intervention makes architecture pliable and responsive. Through interactions, the soundscapes are reassembled, but never repeated. When someone lingers on the steps, so do the sounds; and when visitors climb up and down, the sounds coalesce, with a few surprises along the way.

Programming by Navid Navab and JS Rousseau from the Topological Media Lab
Special thanks to Rik Poejo and Stephanie Nilles for lending music and voices.

Press and reviews:
Rozelle, J. W. 2010. “Engaging with the Everyday,” Rice Magazine, December.
Afra, O. 2010. “Interview: Lina Dib and Sounds for Stairs,” Free Press Houston, October.
Anspon, C. D. 2010. “Art Notes: Alternative Action/Rock ’n’ Roll: Recommended.” Paper City  Magazine, October.

image courtesy of Herbert Melichar
image courtesy of Herbert Melichar