Killing Buddha 殺佛 is the name of a sound-art installation at Radioartemobile in Rome, Italy, co-created by Staalplaat Soundsystem and FM3 and due to open June 21. The duo FM3 have been posting images of the work-in-progress on their Facebook account (at facebook.com), including those shown in this post.
The Buddha Machine has had an incredible run, from offbeat sound-art gizmo to widely sampled source material to cottage industry, and the Rome exhibition suggests the run will continue for some time.
That such a modest device, none of the constituent parts of which suggest any sort of mainstream success (inexpensive production, low-fie sound quality, abstract audio loops), has captured so many imaginations speaks as much to our time, to the increasing public awareness of sound (apart from music) as a subject of appreciation, as it does to the implicit ingenuity of the beloved gadget’s inventors.
That is neither Christiaan Virant nor Zhang Jian of FM3 hammering nails into a lemon-yellow Buddha Machine, but Geert-Jan Hobijn of Staalplaat.
In related news, check out the colorful Buddha Machine gallery at flickr.com.