Ayumi Paul is the Gropius Bau's In House: Artist In Residence 2022

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Ayumi Paul is the Gropius Bau's In House: Artist In Residence 2022
Ayumi Paul. Photo: Debora Mittelstaedt.

BERLIN.- The Gropius Bau welcomes Ayumi Paul as In House: Artist in Residence 2022. Following Wu Tsang, Otobong Nkanga, Zheng Bo and SERAFINE1369, Ayumi Paul will present her participatory singing sculpture The Singing Project as part of the residency. Paul’s work represents the latest activation of the opening of the Gropius Bau’s light-filled atrium space. From April 2022, The Singing Project will unfold within a dedicated room for residents, providing a setting for continuous engagement with audiences and communities.

“Ayumi Paul’s work delves into the interconnection of bodies, rhythm and cycles of nature. Her research on the ways sound connects us all is a touchstone for the Gropius Bau, informing our approach to topics such as making space and finding common ground, and also bodily knowledge, collective practice and communal listening. We are eager to welcome her and The Singing Project at the Gropius Bau.”
— Stephanie Rosenthal, Director of the Gropius Bau

A violinist, composer and artist, Ayumi Paul’s work is anchored in a practice of listening. Her art departs from the intersections of sound, composition and perception. Informed by the resonant frequencies of material, and the understanding that everything is animate, her most recent research focuses on states of rest. It asks us to sense, in a non-linear way, what is there when one does not actively interfere. Working with paper, textile, stitching, as well as performance and installation, her work can be described as an exploration of connectivity. It allows us to experience a realm of synchronicity between moving and being moved, between performer and performed, and between the body and the imagination.

The Singing Project is a fluid composition and collective practice that unfurls through time and space. The permeable structure of the project activates sound formations that emerge anew in every moment, and does not end with the presentation at the Gropius Bau. To prepare for these workshops, the artist studied singing traditions ranging from opera, the Tao of voice and polyphonic overtones, to healing techniques and historical and mythological approaches to passing down ritual songs. By combining what she learns and weaving it together with her own intuitive practice, she generates a flexible singing method rooted in the female voice and in collective learning processes. The project unfolds endlessly, as an open-ended practice that anyone can take back with them and activate anywhere, anytime.

At the Gropius Bau, the latest instantiation of The Singing Project is located in a room that can be entered free-of-charge during opening hours, aside from registration-only workshops. These workshops take place on the full moon and, for women only, on the new moon. The ongoing project is one key materialisation of the Gropius Bau’s focus on practices of caring, repairing and healing.

Ayumi Paul studied classical violin at the Hanns Eisler School of Music Berlin and Indiana University Bloomington in the United States. She toured internationally from 2000–2015, playing at concert halls around the world. Increasingly, her works are performed in museums and galleries. Her first institutional solo exhibition took place at the Kunsthalle in Osnabrück in the spring of 2020. In 2021 she was granted a residency at Villa Massimo in Rome.

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