Whoop House

Whoop House pic

Duderstadt Center Gallery
January 13-20, 2023
Friday, January 13, 6-9 pm Opening Reception
(perform, watch, hang out, meet the artist)

Starting Friday there is going to be an opportunity for students, faculty, and other community members to interact with a project called Whoop House, designed by UMS artist in residence and U of M alum Ash Arder.  Students worked with Ash during their class section of Social Spaces and during that time they talked about public art, ethics, and DIY approaches to art. It was a great opportunity to talk with a working artist and be involved in their decision making process.  

How To Whoop:

Anyone can use the Whoop House during the duration of it’s stay at Duderstadt. Sign up is karaoke style. If you want to get on the list send an email to whoophouse@gmail.com and your name will be put on the calendar. 

Get creative: events can include lectures, presentations, performances, DJ sets, monologues, talk shows… 

Whoop House is a completely solar-powered sound sculpture that records and plays back instruments and voices of community members. The mobile sculpture includes a solar energy micro-grid designed to power popular musical equipment like keyboards, turntables, microphones, and speakers. The modular design of the sculpture allows it to travel between neighborhoods and spaces modeling the use of solar energy to unite and empower people around climate justice themes. 

Whoop House x UMich Ann Arbor:

Whoop House had a soft launch at the end of the summer in Detroit, where several improvisational and participatory music events were organized around the sculpture. During Fall and Winter, Whoop House will travel to the University of Michigan campus where, as part of her residency activities with University Musical Society, Ash Arder will work with STAMPS and School of Music Theatre & Dance students to further activate the sculpture. This incubation period will create space for students to work directly with a working artist to prototype programming, user guides, and visual materials for Whoop House as it prepares to tour Detroit neighborhoods in Summer 2023. It will serve as a case study for Michael Andrews’ Social Spaces STAMPS course, and a literal stage for Marcus Elliot’s Creative Arts Orchestra ensemble.

Ash Arder graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Communications Studies, and spent the majority of her free time organizing concerts and visual arts events for her fellow student body. Whoop House provides a framework to explore the business of being an artist from research and development, to budgeting and fundraising, to production, to archiving. Using this particular creative project as a starting point, Ash will share with students her process of transforming skills learned as a student organizer into a career in the arts. 

Ash Arder Bio:

Ash Arder is a transdisciplinary artist, organizer and educator who has spent the last decade transforming DIY, hacker and experimental approaches to problem solving into formalized programs, projects, and collaborations. Her work and research use storytelling and speculative collaboration as frameworks to explore climate and social justice themes. Ash manipulates physical and virtual environments to explore mark making, mechanical portraiture and sound design as tools for complicating dynamics of power between humans, machines and the lands they occupy.

Ash is the current resident artist for the University Musical Society, and she has participated in numerous residency programs including: Bemis Center for Contemporary Art in Omaha, Recess in Brooklyn, and A Studio In The Woods in New Orleans. Additional work and roles in the creative industries include: Owner of Good Lab, Detroit-based art studio and gallery; Co-curator of Detroit Pavilion at St. Etienne International Design Biennial; Cultural Strategist + Producer for Creative Many Michigan; Public Art Manager for Midtown Detroit Inc.; and Public Art Commissioner for the City of Ann Arbor. She has a Master of Fine Arts in Fiber from Cranbrook Academy of Art and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications Studies from University of Michigan.

Stamps engagement through the course “Social Spaces” taught by Michael Andrews

In “Social Spaces”  it  is my goal to show students ways to get their ideas out into the world and start to become in charge of their own messaging. We make the materialization of  ideas in public spaces a priority.  Ash Arder’s “Whoop House” is the perfect project to share with students because it involves long and short term planning, real collaboration, and expansive thinking.  We spent several days in class brainstorming, addressing challenges, and testing ideas. Preparing the collaboration with Ash has been incredible because of her trust and openness. To have a working artist come to a STAMPS classroom and invite students to help activate their project is a gift and a gesture of deep generosity.

Creative Arts Orchestra led by  Marcus ElliotPerformance: Thursday, January 19, 2023, from 6-9:00 pm.

Through the lens of Black American improvised music, the Creative Arts Orchestra challenges the musician to dig deep within themselves to find what they can uniquely express as an individual, and then to share that gift with the ensemble and add to the collective intention which is; to create moments of high-level expression as a community by celebrating the individual gift we all have to offer.

Learn more about the project in the vimeo post Solar Juke recap and learn about the sculpture in The Architect’s Newspaper.