David Henckel

Participant category:Artist exhibiting at the PR1 gallery at the University of Central Lancashire, and Co-curator of Digital Aesthetic³ 2012 at the PR1 Gallery

Artwork:Golden Gum (2012)


Golden Gum – Interactive, audio-visual installation, 2012
David Henckel with Dan Wilkinson & Leon Hardman.

Golden Gum is an interactive installation based on the distribution of discarded chewing gum outside the PR1 Gallery in Preston.

Henckel meticulously mapped the area and built up a database of coordinates for all the chewing gum. This allowed him to generate sine waves for each piece of gum whose frequency was directly dependent upon its position within the space.

The sounds are grouped into zones covered by an array of Passive Infra Red sensors and laser triggers, making the space sensitive to movement within it. This allows an audience to play the sounds, ranging from low end sub bass to high pitch tweets, as they move around the space.

The gum itself, normally overlooked, has been painted gold – refocusing our perception of it and raising its presumed value to that of a precious commodity.


David Henckel’s practice explores instances of unintentional collaboration between people, with a particular focus on the detritus of contemporary urban life. His work involves subtle, often humorous, shifts of focus and opens up the possibility for the audience to become ‘players’ within the work.

He is one of five Lancashire based artists who have been commissioned by In Certain Places to develop new temporary public artwork, to be presented during the Preston Guild celebrations in September 2012. In 2010 he was awarded the public and student vote for work created on the AA2A scheme (Artists Access to Art Colleges). He is also the founding editor of The Two Hats – a multi-authored website that promotes, reviews and critiques the best of art and culture in Preston.


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