For six months I collaborated with 6 women with Alzheimer’s to find ways in generating sounds and compositions despite memory and dexterity loss. The vinyl picture disc contains two compositions edited from recordings I made of the group plucking, dusting strings, fumbling and generating raw sounds. As a component of the project the women created their own guitar playing persona that were then photographed. Each found her own way to use sound as a vehicle for the self. This project includes a vinyl LP Picture disc record, video piece titled “Exchanges” and color portraits. The project was presented at Northwestern’s Neurological Conference in 2004, MOFFOM festival in Prague and in Carrie Secrest Gallery exhibit Synesthesia.
Exchanges, parts 1 – 3, 7 min, 2003 (Video component of the Guitars Project): Exchanges locates aspects of music performed by the 6 women in the context of their interaction and subtle movement. While the music clearly illustrates the collaborative nature of the project, the visuals reflect a physical isolation. Gräf pays attention more to the moments inbetween the sounds, hilighting a chance to listen to and judge these performances on unique terms.