Every Possible Utterance


Students from Carnegie Mellon University’s Integrative Design, Arts, and Technology (IDeATe) network took over the MuseumLab for an evening of immersive art and performance. Formally known as the Carnegie Free Library of Allegheny, the MuseumLab, now an annex to Children’s Museum Pittsburgh, provided a grand architectural canvas transformed into an inter-dimensional portal that connected the site’s past to 2019. This explorable art and musical experience interacted with the unique historical, structural, and design elements of MuseumLab, bathing audiences in immersive sight and sound happenings.

Audience members listen to the concert portion of the evening.


Every Possible Utterance, is based upon Jorge Louis Borges’ short story “The Library of Babel” which presents a universe in the form of a finite library where the order and content of the books are random and apparently meaningless. In spite of this, the library contains every coherent book ever written. Borges asks us to search for the possibility of meaning in randomness and the power of infinity.

Musicians perform in a netting of rope above the audience as they wander below in the Museum Lab’s stacks.


An artist sits behind a curtain performing tasks that are shown on screens throughout the space.


The audience explores and interacts with sculptures, roving musicians, and performers during the first half. While the second half presents live and visual art in concert with musical compositions and animation.

The faculty mentors for this project included: Jesse Stiles Assistant Teaching Professor of Sound Media and Music, Annie Hui-Hsin Hsieh Assistant Teaching Professor in Music Theory, Johannes DeYoung Assistant Professor of Art, Robert Zacharias Special Faculty in IDeATe, and Heidi Wiren Bartlett Designer & Adjunct Professor.

Musicians performs during the concert portion of the evening.


This project was made possible by generous support from the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry and IDeATe at Carnegie Mellon University along with partners at the MuseumLab.


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