John Cage speaking on silence
Armed with microphones, a digital recording device, and a video camera, Emeka Ogboh captures the maddening hyper-visuality of Lagos: vivid colours, the syncopated cries of street and highway hawkers, yelling bus conductors, the impatient bleats of car and bus horns, and hoards of people in…
Sound and Time
San Antonio-based artist Justin Boyd often takes a multidisciplinary approach to exploring uncharted territories. His past work includes sculpture, performance, sound, and video, and at times he combines all of these elements to create ambitious large-scale environments. In this short documentary, Justin explains his fascination with sound and its role in his art.
Changing Signals - Currently on show at GV Art Gallery London
Changing Signals is an audio-visual piece commissioned in August 2013 by GV Art Gallery London for the exhibition Noise and Whispers. The piece explores the hidden sounds of the London Tube and train network. These unheard sounds are produced electromagnetically by trains and equipment and are recorded through custom-built inductor devices. These devices are formed of large coils of wire and convert Very Low Frequency (VLF) electromagnetic radio, a frequency band of the electromagnetic spectrum, into sound and other data. VLF has scientific applications in the fields of radio astronomy and seismography. The recordings expose a sound world that is experienced everyday but never heard by the many passengers of the London train network.
The audio is accompanied by footage of the objects, which generate these sounds set alongside images and film of the scientific apparatus used to record and analyze electromagnetic and VLF data such as oscilloscopes, spectrograms and seismographs.
Changing Signals is comprised of three sections each focusing on a different aspect of the sounds recorded.
The first section looks at the sounds experienced outside the train standing on platforms: hums and drones increasing in intensity as trains approach. The footage is inter-spliced with that of an oscilloscope, a device used to visualize oscillations in electrical voltage. Like standing on a platform, this provides a surface level view to the sonic landscapes of the underground network.
The second section takes place inside the train carriage. The sounds become more intense as the receiver is exposed to greater electromagnetic fields. A number of spectrograms – visual representations of an audio spectrum – are incorporated into the footage, looking further into the interior of the sounds.
The final section takes place outside of the tube network on an over-ground train. Surprisingly this proves to be the noisiest section of the work. To represent this, distortions are introduced into the video. The apparatus footage in this section comes from a cardiogram, an instrument that works with similar principles to a seismograph but measures the human pulse instead of earthquake activity. This is used to represent the London transport network as the lifeblood of London.
Accreditations and thanks:
Oscilloscope Footage – Volker Klocke, www.oscilloscopemuseum.com
Cardiogram Footage – Wellcome Library London
Part of an ongoing project by Andrei Smirnov and Liubov Pchelkina that is attempting to reconstruct the censored history and culture of the Russian artistic Utopia of the 1910-1920s – a kind of ‘network culture’ of revolutionaries in art who realized seemingly unrealizable projects in sound, invented new musical machines, and who explored concepts and methods that offered a promising basis for future scientific and cultural development. The exhibition offers an introduction to some of the key figures of the period and their areas of research.
Artist Evan Holm is convinced that ‘there will be a time when all tracings of human culture will dissolve back into the soil under the slow crush of the unfolding universe’.
To demonstrate these rather dark thoughts, he created a submerged record player that’s still producing a nearly perfect audio as demonstrated in the short video below.
FOREST (for a thousand years); 2012; Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller
This is a 6 minute excerpt from a 28 minute audio installation created for dOCUMENTA (13).
"Octopus is a Cumbria-based sound art and music organisation founded in 2009 by artists John Hall, Andrew Deakin and Glenn Boulter.
Our first project was the 2009 FON Festival, taking place in a former shipyard canteen in Barrow-in-Furness and featuring performances and new work from Mobile Radio, Faust, Richard Youngs, John Wall, Haco, Susan Matthews, Pram and more.
This was followed in 2010 by a series of residencies, performances and public realm sound art commissions in partnership with other arts organisations across the North West. Events included film screenings, residencies from AGF and Hildur Gudnadottir, workshops and a series of commissions for Barrow Park bandstand from artists including Paul Rooney, Dan Fox, Mary Stark, Ellie Chaney and C97.
After establishing a permanent base at Piel View House in Barrow Park and achieving Arts Council England National Portfolio Status in 2011, we delivered the second FON Festival, featuring outdoor works for the park Crazy Golf Hack and the Open Source Swan Pedalo, residencies from Philip Jeck, AGF and Tetsuo Kogawa and performances from Dopplereffekt, Boxcutter, Lee Gamble and Tom Scott.
Projects for 2012/13 include continuing our ongoing residency programme, further collaborations with Black Combe and Sacred Heart Primary Schools, a monthly hardware hacking group and a series of live broadcasts under our FON Air radio banner.”
"2013 :: Recomposed is a field recording/collage project in 365 parts. Armed with a lo-fi voice recorder, I record for one year the sounds of my daily surroundings, in order to reorganize them in new entities. No soundclips or oscillators were used, every single sound is taken from real life and recorded the very same day as I recompose them. In a way, I rewrite a part of my life in music" Helsen Giles