Morning Song/Evening Song gathers 288 Springfield residents in a gesture
of rejuvenation, creating a cacophony of bird-like song to celebrate the dawn at a brownfield site scheduled to become an
urban park, and to celebrate the night at the recently renovated Park Central Square in the center of downtown, two sites
half a mile apart in Center City.
Morning Song/Evening Song comprises two separate
events, each event a gathering of 144 Springfield, MO, residents of all ages, each person or child in possession of an Audubon
Bird Call, a simple birch wood and metal instrument operated by twisting a zinc plug inside a turned wood dowel. The first
gathering will occur in the morning at dawn on a brown-field site in the Springfield Center City that is the proposed location
of West Meadows Park, still several years away. The second gathering will occur at dusk in Park Central Square in the heart
of downtown Springfield several blocks away, as an event during that month’s First Friday Art Walk. In each instance
the participants will arrange themselves in a loose grid with everyone standing about 6 feet apart in each direction, over
an area approximately 576 square yards (about a third of a football field). Once in place, the participants will begin making
bird calls in sequence, with each participant calling over a very carefully determined duration of time. The work will begin
silence, broken at first by one individual song, increasing as a scattered music of call and response with the sound growing
over the course of about 15 minutes into a crescendo of bird calls before fading into a single voice with a return to silence.
The morning event will coincide with the rising of the sun, and the potential of framing the dawn with the Grant Ave. overpass
as a backdrop. The evening event will coincide with sunset, with the light hopefully catching the tops of the taller buildings
on the square as the Square itself fades into shadow. The bird-song component of each event will last 30 minutes.
A videographer recorded each event. Participants kept their bird calls.
The installation occured April 4 & 5, 2014.