Tantalum Memorial & Phone Wars

Conceived and produced by Southend-based artists Harwood, Wright, Yokokoji, “Tantalum Memorial” is a series of telephony based memorials to the people who have died in the “Coltan Wars”.

The installation is constructed out of electromagnetic Strowger switches – the basis of the first automatic telephone exchange invented in 1888. The title of the work refers to the metal tantalum, an essential component of mobile phones derived from coltan ore. The movements and sounds of the switches are triggered by the phone calls of London's Congolese community as they participate in “Telephone Trottoire” – a concurrent project also built by the artists in collaboration with the Congolese radio program “Nostalgie Ya Mboka”.

This work has recently been touring in six shows around the world and won two international prizes including the transmediale.09 in Berlin. Currently installed in the gallery’s Winch Tower, this show will be the UK premiere.
Tantalum Memorial & Phone Wars


Event Title: Tantalum Memorial & Phone Wars
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