Sunday, 1. January 2012, 23:03 - 23:59, Ö1


25 years Kunstradio – from the archive

“The Labyrinth Scored for the Purrs of 11 Cats“ 

by Terry Fox 

Selected by Andrea Sodomka


Terry Fox
To celebrate Kunstradio’s 25th birthday in 2012, we have invited artists to select one favourite radio art piece each. The series starts with Andrea Sodomka’s choice, the legendary work “The Labyrinth Scored for the Purrs of 11 Cats“ by Terry Fox.

On his complex of works dealing with the mysterious labyrinth in the Chartres cathedral, Fox wrote: “"The labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral is made of blue and white stones set into the stone floor of the cathedral. It is a unicursal path winding in 34 turns through 11 concentric rings to the center. It is 12m 87 in diameter and has 552 steps following its course from the entrance to the center. This labyrinth formed the blueprint for all my work from 1972 to 1978. I attempted to make sound from it a few times.“

For the “Labyrinth Scored for the Purrs of 11 Cats”, he recorded 8 minutes of purring of 11 different cats. “They were then mixed to follow the exact path of the labyrinth with one cat representing each of the 11 concentric rings, 10 seonds of overlapping purrs to indicate each of the 34 turns. The tape follows in stereo the path of the labyrinth with the center finally represented by the simultaneous purring of all 11 cats.” (Terry Fox in: Linkage. LP und Katalog, Kunstmuseum Luzern, 1982)
For Andrea Sodomka, part of the artists group Alien Productions, it was an obvious choice, as she explains:

„I cannot remember where I first heard the piece, but I can recall that it impressed me deeply. And it still does. When I heard it, I was a fine art student with a strong interest in (but little knowledge of) contemporary music. Terry Fox’ piece is very sculptural and it perfectly matched my ideas of sound as art Fox didn’t intend it to be a radio work, nonetheless it is a true radio work. Certainly it has influenced many artists, not just me.”