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Annika Kahrs presents her sound and video work in the museum’s entrance and cupola hall; the project title is ‘the lord loves changes, it’s one of his greatest delusions’. This work is influenced by the Afro-American composer, musician and performer Julius Eastman (1940–1990) who linked his minimalistic compositions with political, economic and religious respectively spiritual statements. Annika Kahrs now refers to a piece of music by Eastman comprising the melody of Luther’s famous chorale ‘Our good is a strong castle’ (Eine feste Burg ist unser Gott, probably late 1527). This chorale – considered as protest song of the Reformation movement, so to speak – has been repeatedly reinterpreted in other political and social contexts in later years.

Thus, Kahrs does not only use this piece of music in one context, but reflects the continuous shift, translation and reinterpretation of different structures of power within a social space-time continuum.

Annika Kahrs asked an expert to arrange a piece for organ inspired by Eastman’s track and the chorale. Together with the London composer Louis d’Heudieres she arranged a special music piece: A choir of 26 performers may whistle along and whistle against it as well. The collective whistling of the human choir competes with the organ’s mechanical whistling. This starts a musical process varying between melodic whistling and a gesture of protest, finally leading to obvious physical exhaustion.

 

Annika Kahrs lives and works in Hamburg and Berlin.

1984 Born in Achim
2005 until 2012 Studied fine arts at the University of Fine Arts Hamburg, the Academy of Fine Art Vienna and the Braunschweig University of Art