Janet Cardiff: The Forty Part Motet

January 12–September 10, 2012

Janet Cardiff created this spatialized adaptation of a sixteenth-century, sacred motet by recording each member of a choir individually and piping each voice into its own speaker. A survey of her work was presented at MoMA PS1 that year, featuring The Forty Part Motet in the same room where it is currently on view.

The Forty Part Motet will be on view until September 4, 2012.


Janet Cardiff. The Forty Part Motet. 2001. Reworking of "Spem in Alium Nunquam habui"(1575), by Thomas Tallis; 40-track sound recording (14:00 minutes), 40 speakers. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Jo Carole and Ronald S. Lauder in memory of Rolf Hoffmann, 2002.    

Sung by Salisbury Cathedral Choir; recording and postproduction by SoundMoves; edited by George Bures Miller; produced by Field Art Projects.

The Forty Part Motet was originally produced by Field Art Projects with the Arts Council of England, the Salisbury Festival, BALTIC Gateshead, The New Art Gallery Walsall, and the NOW Festival Nottingham.