Photo of a man standing in snow.
Photo of a sepia-colored landscape with clouds.

LaMont Hamilton: To Hear the Earth Before the End of the World

February 3 - July 16, 2022

To Hear the Earth Before the End of the World (a rephrasing phrasing of poet Ed Roberson's book To See the Earth Before the End of the World) is a light and sound installation organized around elements of air, earth, fire, water, and the aether. The work includes field recordings Hamilton captured during his research and travels to Europe and North and South America where he gained what he calls "a ground zero understanding of our changing Earth. Hearing glaciers cracking, smelling forest fires, the mechanical cacophony of land being razed—all felt on a cellular level.” In this installation, a ring of speakers plays long-form compositions of modulated environmental recordings intermixed with digital and instrumental sounds. Hamilton’s music of landscapes features contrasting sounds of violent eruptions and lulling melodies. Audiences are invited to spend time within a heightened sensory environment wherein Hamilton asks us to listen to the sounds of a changing climate that involves both creation and destruction.

Each week a different element will be featured.

Running times:
aether: 2hr 13min
air: 2hr 05min
earth: 2hr 35min
fire: 2hr 13min
water: 2hr 22min

LaMont Hamilton is the CU Art Museum’s 2022 artist-in-residence. As part of the CU Art Museum’s open-call biennial residency program, artists are invited to mine CU Boulder’s creative and intellectual resources to create new artwork while interacting with faculty, students, and the public.

This exhibition and programming are generously supported by CU Boulder Student Arts and Cultural Enrichment fees and CU Art Museum members.

Organized by Sandra Q. Firmin

Special thanks to Pedro Caceres, Erin Espelie, Steven Frost, and the CU Art Museum Artist-in-Residence selection committee: Sandra Q. Firmin, Jose Lizarraga, Stephen Martonis, Jorge Perez-Gallego, Khadijah Queen, Yumi Roth, and Helanius J. Wilkins.


Feb 4-8 : Earth (runtime 2hr 35min)
Feb 9: Air (2hr 05min)
Feb 10: Water (2hr 22min)
Feb 11: Fire (2hr 13min)
Feb 12: Aether (2hr 13min)

Weekly rotation starting Feb 15:
Feb 15 -Earth
Feb 22 -Air
Mar 1 - Water
Mar 8 - Fire
Mar 15 - Aether
Mar 22 - Earth
Mar 29 - Air
Apr 5 - Water
Apr 12 - Fire
Apr 19 - Aether
Apr 26 - Earth
May 3 - Air
May 10 - Water
May 17 - Fire
May 24 - Aether
May 31 - Earth
June 7 - Air
June 14 - Water
June 21 - Fire
June 28 - Aether

Starting July 5th they will go on a daily rotation again:
July 5-9 - (5 - Earth, 6 - Air, 7 - Water, 8 - Fire, 9 - Aether)
July 12-16 - (12 - Earth, 13 - Air, 14 - Water, 15 - Fire, 16 - Aether)