A New Box Set Captures Harry Bertoia at the Sonambient Barn

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By Dwell
Late in life, designer and artist Harry Bertoia built hundreds of sound-making sculptures, clusters of thin metal rods that produce strange tones when touched.

Harry Bertoia (1915-1978) the Italian-born furniture designer behind the Diamond chair and other Knoll classics is celebrated as a master not just in modernist circles, but even in the mainstream. Harry Bertoia the creator of elaborate metal gongs and sound sculptures who spent the late part of his career making otherworldly music at a barn in backwoods Pennsylvania, sometimes with vocal support from his brother and sister, is more of a cult figure.  

But the sound experiments he produced at his "Sonambient Barn" have always commanded a dedicated following. In 1971, two fans, filmmakers Jeffrey and Miriam Eger, visited to shoot a performance by and conversation with Bertoia. On November 17, Bertoia’s label will release the documentary Sonambients: The Sound Sculpture of Harry Bertoia on DVD for the first time, along with a CD of intimate recordings. Check out rare photos from the accompanying 16-page booklet below. 


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