Category: Culture History & Identity

Planeta Abuelx – Guadalupe Maravilla

Through Totemic Sculptures and Sound Art, Guadalupe Maravilla Explores the Therapeutic Power of Indigenous Ritual. Maravilla works across painting, sculpture, and sound-based performances all veiled with autobiography, whether informed by the Mayan architecture and stone totems that surrounded him as a child or his cancer diagnosis as a young adult. His pieces are predominately therapeutic and rooted in Indigenous ritual and mythology,…Continue Reading Planeta Abuelx – Guadalupe Maravilla

Elevator Pitch – Christine Sun Kim

Elevator Pitch is inspired by Kim’s childhood memories of crowding elevators with her Deaf friends, and shouting so loudly that they could feel the vibrations of each others’ voices. Meanwhile, elevators are often known to hearing people as sites of “awkward silence,” thus the concept of this installation challenges when and where various people have a voice. Born Deaf herself, Kim approaches Elevator Pitch by investigating how Deaf communities of New Orleans experience a city so deeply defined by music, and by highlighting how Deaf people are vital to this culture of sound….Continue Reading Elevator Pitch – Christine Sun Kim

Steel-Fonics – Ricardo Iammuri Robinson

The STEEL-FONICS attempts to shed light on a hidden contribution to Pittsburgh’s industrial past. In this culture, African Americans are typecast dancing, singing or marching against a backdrop of poverty, crime or packed arenas in order to be recognized.  This installation employs the power of stereotype and reimagines a creative collective of black industrial steel workers called The STEEL-FONICS.  The African American contribution to the enormous expansion of the American steel industry has been all but invisible.  This exhibition is a new kind of labor strike against historical omission….Continue Reading Steel-Fonics – Ricardo Iammuri Robinson

Raven Chacon

Originally from the Navajo Nation, Raven Chacon is a composer of chamber music, a performer of experimental noise music, and an installation artist. He performs regularly as a solo artist as well as with numerous ensembles in the Southwest and beyond. He is also a member of the Indigenous art collective Postcommodity, with who he recently premiered the two-mile-long land art/border intervention, Repellent Fence….Continue Reading Raven Chacon

Kevin Beasley – A view of a landscape

Kevin Beasley engages with the legacy of the American South through an installation that centers on a cotton gin motor from Maplesville, Alabama. In operation from 1940 to 1973, the motor powered the gins that separated cotton seeds from fiber. Here, the New York-based artist uses it to generate sound as if it were a musical instrument, creating space for visual and aural contemplation. …Continue Reading Kevin Beasley – A view of a landscape

Ultra-Red Five – Five Protocols for Listening

In honor of May Day, Ultra-red release the PDF of our latest workbook for militant sound inquiry, “Five Protocols for Organized Listening” (5.8MB). The workbook compiles protocols for collective listening developed by multiple teams of investigators from 2009 to 2011 in cities across North America and Europe. “Five Protocols” is also accompanied by links to related sound objects on the School of Echoes Soundcloud page. Please feel free to download and distribute. We only ask that you send us feedback on your experiments with organized listening and militant sound investigation….Continue Reading Ultra-Red Five – Five Protocols for Listening

Christoph Cox – Dematerialization

Very nice meditative lecture on the idea of the ephemeral in art by Christoph Cox. There is a strong sonic emphasis here, but also on other forces like wind, fire, electromagnetic energy, etc. He begins with an intro but the actual performative lecture begins around 8:11. The names of all of the artists and writers that he uses in the lecture are included at the end….Continue Reading Christoph Cox – Dematerialization

2017 The World is Sound at the Rubin Museum

JUNE 16, 2017 – JANUARY 8, 2018
Featuring work by more than 20 artists, The World Is Sound juxtaposes new site-specific commissions and works by prominent contemporary sound artists with historical objects from the museum’s collection of Tibetan Buddhist art to encourage reflection on how we listen and to challenge entrenched ways of thinking….Continue Reading 2017 The World is Sound at the Rubin Museum

Circumstance – distributed sounds and subtlemobs

Circumstance was established in 2010 as a framework for the collaborations of Duncan Speakman, Sarah Anderson and Emilie Grenier. From 2010 – 2016 we made intimate in-ear stories, subtlemobs, pedestrian symphonies, science fiction theatre , music, and books that go beyond the page.” A Folded Path The performance consists of 30 individual GPS controlled speakers. Each…Continue Reading Circumstance – distributed sounds and subtlemobs

Education – Minute of Listening

Minute of Listening at Hull Primary Schools Sound and Music in partnership with PRS for Music Foundation, have developed a special version of their Minute of Listening project for Hull (UK) Primary schools, following their core idea of interactively explore listening and music in educational processes. “We are delighted to announce a special Minute of…Continue Reading Education – Minute of Listening

Activist Sound – Christopher DeLaurenti

“Activist Sound is one way to describe the sound pieces, performances, and installations I make from field recordings of protests, testimonies, and other pertinent sonic materials of social change. In my longer works, I’m a reporter who writes novels in sound. I listen to find out whether what we hear harbors the power to suspend…Continue Reading Activist Sound – Christopher DeLaurenti

Akazehe – Greeting Sung by a young girl

Akazehe – Greeting Sung by a young girl – Recorded on June 9, 1967 In the same breath, the singer uses both chest-voice and head-voice (alternating rapidly from one to the other) to obtain a yodelling effect which is frequently encountered in Africa among the pygmies. and here is another similar vocal technique from another part…Continue Reading Akazehe – Greeting Sung by a young girl

Steven Feld – Voices of the Rainforest (sound anthropology)

Voices of the Rainforest is a recorded soundscape of a day in the life of the Kaluli people of Bosavi, Papua New Guinea. As the day progresses, one hears birds, water, insects and other ambient voices of the rainforest interspersed with Kaluli songs and instrumental sounds of work, leisure and ritual. The album was recorded…Continue Reading Steven Feld – Voices of the Rainforest (sound anthropology)

Torture Methods With Sound: How Pure Noise Can Be Used To Break You Psychologically

Have you ever got a song stuck in your head that you just can’t seem to shake? That catchy piece of music on a recurrent loop in your brain, also known as an earworm, may seem torturous but pales in comparison to actual sound torture employed for military purposes. Sound torture is a type of…Continue Reading Torture Methods With Sound: How Pure Noise Can Be Used To Break You Psychologically

Two Trains – Sonification of Income Inequality on the NYC Subway

“This song emulates a ride on the New York City Subway’s 2 Train through three boroughs: Brooklyn, Manhattan, and the Bronx. At any given time, the quantity and dynamics of the song’s instruments correspond to the median household income of that area. Read more about the composition and process of creating this song here: datadrivendj.com/tracks/subway…Continue Reading Two Trains – Sonification of Income Inequality on the NYC Subway

Soundweaving: Artist Converts Folk Embroidery Patterns into Paper Scores for Music Boxes

Soundweaving is a recent project by Hungarian design student Zsanett Szirmay that turns patterns used in traditional folk embroidery into music by translating them into laser-cut punch cards fed through a custom music box. The project was partially inspired by actual paper cards used in some weaving looms to easily reproduce patterns for various textiles….Continue Reading Soundweaving: Artist Converts Folk Embroidery Patterns into Paper Scores for Music Boxes

British Library Says 6.5 Million Sounds Are in Jeopardy

Luke McKernan, lead curator of news and moving image, wrote in the January 12 announcement: “Archival consensus internationally is that we have approximately 15 years in which to save our sound collections by digitising them before they become unreadable and are effectively lost.” The recordings date back to the 1880s, including everything from the voices of…Continue Reading British Library Says 6.5 Million Sounds Are in Jeopardy

Songs of War – Music as Torture

Music elates, touches the soul and bypasses reason. Music is magic. But precisely this magic can turn it into an insidious weapon – for music and violence belong together. The brutal power of African war dances, the ferocity of Maori Hakas, the earth-shattering roar of US sound guns blasting Metallica at Taliban hideouts – the…Continue Reading Songs of War – Music as Torture

Listen to Wikipedia

Listen to the sound of Wikipedia’s recent changes feed. Bells indicate additions and string plucks indicate subtractions. Pitch changes according to the size of the edit; the larger the edit, the deeper the note. Green circles show edits from unregistered contributors, and purple circles mark edits performed by automated bots. You may see announcements for…Continue Reading Listen to Wikipedia

Happy Halloween – VOICES FROM THE DEAD – EVP

From BBC News magazine In 1969, a mysterious middle-aged Latvian doctor turned up in Gerrards Cross with a large collection of tape recordings. He had, he said, been conducting experiments in communication with the dead, and had established contact with Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini and many other deceased 20th Century statesmen. The recordings – 72,000 of…Continue Reading Happy Halloween – VOICES FROM THE DEAD – EVP

Acousmatic listening and other sound and politics.

In light of our reading on sound in public and private space, here are some links that might be called “Sound and Power”. http://soundstudiesblog.com/2014/10/20/the-acousmatic-era-of-surveillance/ “NSA dataveillance listens acousmatically because it hears the patterns of relationships that emerge from various combinations of data—e.g., which people talk and/or meet where and with what regularity. Instead of listening to…Continue Reading Acousmatic listening and other sound and politics.

The Knitted Radio – Ebru Kurbak

I ran across this piece in the fascinating exhibition HOW THINGS DON’T WORK in the Kellen Gallery at 2 west 13th street. Here’s information from the artist’s website The Knitted Radio is a project developed in collaboration with Irene Posch at Eyebeam Art + Technology Center in New York. It is part of an ongoing…Continue Reading The Knitted Radio – Ebru Kurbak

The Sound So Loud That It Circled the Earth Four Times

On 27 August 1883, the Earth let out a noise louder than any it has made since. It was 10:02 AM local time when the sound emerged from the island of Krakatoa, which sits between Java and Sumatra in Indonesia. It was heard 1,300 miles away in the Andaman and Nicobar islands (“extraordinary sounds were…Continue Reading The Sound So Loud That It Circled the Earth Four Times

Stephen Vitiello – A Bell for Every Minute

Stephen Vitiello’s site-specific sound work A Bell For Every Minute was installed in 2010 in the High Line’s 14th Street Passage, a semi-enclosed tunnel between West 13th and West 14th Streets. Vitiello’s subtle tribute to New York City is comprised of recordings of bells from throughout New York City, which range from the iconic ring…Continue Reading Stephen Vitiello – A Bell for Every Minute

La Gatta Cenerentola – di Roberto De Simone + OOIOO

This is a phenomenal incorporation of the body, routine, common actions into a performance. Like the blues this performance takes as its root the relationship between WORK and SONG, of course the ecstatic fervor that emerges is another story entirely and leads up to the final words: Oh sun, come out, rise over this land,…Continue Reading La Gatta Cenerentola – di Roberto De Simone + OOIOO

Janette Sadik-Khan – Honk, Honk, Aaah

Janette Sadik-Khan, the former Commissioner of Transportation under Mayor Bloomburg, was instrumental in creating pedestrian plazas throughout the city. Besides becoming places where one might stop and rest or eat lunch, they have an impact on the movement of traffic — and therefore, NOISE. here’s how an article from New York Magazine (available online) describes…Continue Reading Janette Sadik-Khan – Honk, Honk, Aaah

R. Murray Schafer – Listen

Listen by ONFB, National Film Board of Canada “A soundscape is any collection of sounds, almost like a painting is a collection of visual attractions,” says composer R. Murray Schafer. “When you listen carefully to the soundscape it becomes quite miraculous.” David New’s portrait of the renowned composer becomes a lesson unto itself, gracing viewers…Continue Reading R. Murray Schafer – Listen

Tommy Settlers and His Blues Moaner – ” Shaking Weed Blues “

The human voice is a flexible tool that can convey a great deal more than language. While this track, from 1930, employs the voice in a far more traditional way that the manipulations of someone like Henri Chopin, it is nonetheless an effective example of the way that the voice can undergo transformation. In this…Continue Reading Tommy Settlers and His Blues Moaner – ” Shaking Weed Blues “

The first sound art installation?

http://bldgblog.blogspot.com/2014/06/guided-by-voices.html “the human telephone was like an electromagnetic update to the oracle at Delphi: a lone female figure with access to distant voices, dancing slowly across a dance floor secretly wired from below, an interactive surface whose hidden technology extended up into her very clothing. “…Continue Reading The first sound art installation?

Bird Language

‘Bird Language’ or Kus Dili, is a centuries-old whistled dialect used to communicate across hillsides in the village of Kuskoy, Turkey. Will it survive the digital age? WSJ’s Joe Parkinson reports. Here’s a report from the Atlantic online: For centuries, residents of Kuşköy have communicated over rural Turkey’s vast distances with kuş dili, which literally…Continue Reading Bird Language