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Subnational MP3

Dong Xuan Center, Berlin
16 May - 13 June 2015

[17 minutes 5 seconds]

Available exclusively at Binh & Hoa Import/Export, Subnational MP3 is a rebranded counterfeit MP3 player edition which comes preprogramed with a sound work created by Tieu.

By blending the sound of the Đàn bầu, a traditional Vietnamese stringed instrument, with field recordings of shopping ambiance at KaDeWe and product-placement sequences from movies, the soundwalk second-guesses notions of cultural sophistication, ancient expertise and high-end salesmanship.

Sourcing sounds from Vietnamese traditional musicians such as Pham Duc Thanh and Nguyen Thanh Thuy, Tieu layers their sound with self-recordings of her inquiring in English about designer bags and perfumes at the high-end German shopping center KaDeWe, entering into discussions about the specifics of classic fragrances and handbag designs. The ‘shopping experience’ is further explored by the sound of luxury product-placements from films such as ‘The Devil wears Prada’, ‘Sex and the City’, and ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’, among others.

The MP3 player; purchasable for 20 Euro, Edition of 50

‘Subnational MP3’ is a satellite event accompanying the exhibition Subnational Enterprise by Sung Tieu