A new interactive public art exhibit in Campus Martius Park's Cadillac Square will play music when participants swing. "The Swings: An Exercise in Musical Cooperation," created by internationally renowned studio Daily tous les jours, opens on April 7 and runs through May 8. The Swings, free to the public, will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The installation consists of 10 musical swings, each emitting notes of a guitar, piano, vibraphone, or harp when someone uses them. When used concurrently, the swings compose a synchronized musical piece in which certain melodies emerge through cooperation. The Swings provide an experiential example of cooperation, with the notion that we can achieve more together than separately.
The activation is a 2015 winner of the Knight Cities Challenge, an initiative of Knight Foundation, which seeks ideas to make the 26 communities where Knight invests, including Detroit, more vibrant places to live and work.
"As cities seek new ways to engage residents in community building, the Swings project highlights the power of small interventions to bring new vibrancy to public spaces," said Katy Locker, Knight Foundation program director for Detroit. "It is an invitation for people from different backgrounds to meet, connect, and collectively create. As we continue to present opportunities for people to engage and interact, this project in musical collaboration utilizing a simple outdoor recreational activity exemplifies how each of our individual parts collectively create magic and cooperation."
The Detroit stop is the second in a four city US tour for the installation. It's brought by a partnership between the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Bedrock, the City of Detroit Parks and Recreation Department, Detroit 300 Conservancy, Downtown Detroit Partnership, and Quicken Loans.