Listening All Night To The Rain is a multi-layered exhibition that looks at how the sonic experience mirrors and shapes our cultural realities. Weaving newly filmed material with found still images, video, audio clips and texts from hundreds of international archive collections and libraries, this year’s commission brings together eight multimedia and sound installations.

Each gallery space layers a specific colour field influenced by the paintings of American artist Mark Rothko (1903-1970) in order to point to the ways in which abstraction can represent the fundamental nature of human drama.

Akomfrah intends for the commission to be experienced as a whole, with the artwork organised into song-like movements or ‘cantos’ that are inspired by American poet Ezra Pound’s (1885-1972) journey through history in The Cantos (1925).

'You're meant to experience the whole thing as a Hegalian whole ... bits of it will deal with questions of ethnicity, some with questions of gender, some will deal with flow of water, but all of them will be in a kind of mixed economy. They will be talking to each other.'

John Akomfrah


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