MENSTON rockers Kaiser Chiefs are exploring the art of sound.

"When All Is Quiet - Kaiser Chiefs in conversation with York Art Gallery" described as a 'unique and experimental' exhibition at York Art Gallery, showcases the band's exploration of boundaries between art and music.

Keighley-born frontman Ricky Wilson, bassist Simon Rix and Nick 'Peanut' Baines who met at St Mary's School in Menston, rhythm guitarist Andrew 'Whitey' White and drummer Vijay Mistry re-think sound as a medium in this intriguing showcase allowing visitors to explore the relationships between art and sound, sensation and perception and creation and performance.

"I know Ricky has had experience of art but with regards to something on this scale with a venue as amazing as York Art Gallery, this is definitely unchartered territory for us," explains Vijay.

"When you look back at the journey you are amazed, and very proud, of what you have done, but it has certainly been hard work and we have been out of our comfort zones more than once which is why we have called it 'a conversation with York Art Gallery. It has definitely been a collaboration," he says, referring to working with the staff at the gallery.

Vijay explains how the exhibition evolved when they began to consider the potential of sound art - an interest of fellow band member Simon Rix.

"Simon has experienced a lot of sound art so it expanded a little bit more," says Vijay.

Works by internationally regarded sound artists including Janet Cardiff, Mark Leckey and Turner Prize winning Elizabeth Price have inspired the band to look at sound in new ways including the creation of a silent gig - using light and colour and projected lyrics to create an immersive environment that offers visitors a reconfigured experience of a live music show; a selected “set list” of songs in response to works from York Art Gallery’s collection that reference creation, production or performance.

The Janet Cardiff installation 'The Forty Part Motet', it's acoustic requirements and the surround sound experience provided by 40 individual speakers, particularly resonates with the band.

"I think it will be incredibly emotive and a nice thing to experience," says Vijay.

The show also features works from York Art Gallery’s own collection by artists such as Bridget Riley, Jack Butler Yeats, L.S. Lowry and John Hoyland which inspire an accompanying ‘set list’ of songs by artists such as The Kinks, Kavinsky, Mercury Rev and Super Furry Animals selected by the band.

So could the band be breaking new ground with their interpretation of artistic creativity?

"This is the first thing I have ever heard of where a band has curated an actual sound art exhibition rather than visual art - I don't think anyone has done something like this before, not on this scale, but this is why we are really thankful because we have been allowed the opportunity to do it," says Vijay.

And, true to their roots, the band - who are returning to Elland Road in June - are proud to be launching their exhibition in Yorkshire.

"During the entire history of the band, Yorkshire has been behind us. Hopefully, with this exhibition running until March and when we play Elland Road again it's a Yorkshire celebration," adds Vijay.

Beatrice Bertram, the gallery's senior curator, explains it is the first time they have done something like this on such a scale and with a famous indie rock band.

She hopes the exhibition will have a broader appeal too - attracting visitors who may not normally visit the gallery to explore their collections.

"At the end of the day genres of creativity are not so different and that is what we really wanted to explore in this show," explains Beatrice.

"For me personally, and my co-curators, it has been really fascinating, thought provoking, eye opening and a great fun experience to do this and I hope visitors will enjoy the show as much as we enjoyed making it for them."

'When All is Quiet - Kaiser Chiefs in Conversation with York Art Gallery" runs until March 10 2019. It will be supported by a programme of events, workshops and performances as well as working with an artist in residence to explore the creative process of making music.