In Ranjit Bhatnagar’s Misericordiam, an old accordion hangs in space, suspended from cords and cables. If you press one of the 4 buttons in front of it, the keys begins to move and then play the “tune” you selected. Tune, here, seemed to be more a clacking of keys than anything else and had names like “Shake.”Ad Misericordiam is traditionally an appeal to pity, and in this case you start to feel bad for the old accordion still struggling along make mournful noise.
It has the appeal of fascinating old mechanical things, even as it plays itself at your command. It was definitely one of the pieces I really enjoyed at the DUMBO Arts Festival last weekend.
More from the artist here (and a lot of it is awesome.)