While researching the field of sound, I have come across a few of artists who have peaked my interest and had me thinking about my up and coming project for this semester. Artists who work in the field of sound have come up with a variety of different ways to showcase their talents and allow what they hear – be it minuscule or outright loud – to be explored in a way that engages audiences and encourages sounds to be head in a different light.
While researching artists and their practices I came across Leah Barclay who is an Australian sound artist, composer and researcher. She specialises in electroacoustic music, acoustic ecology and emerging fields of biology exploring environmental patterns and changes through sound.
A project that caught my attention by Leah Barclay is ‘Rainforest Listening‘ which is an augmented reality project that layers rainforest soundscapes in urban environments to inspire ecological engagement. Listeners access the sounds through their mobile and sculpt their own experiences by triggering geolocated soundscapes as they walk. This type of work allows for the audience to engage with one of the most critical environments on earth – the Amazon Rainforest.
I love the idea of Leah Barclay’s work as it is something that I find interesting – the merging of natural and man-made locations. By making this work, Barclay has allowed the medium of sound to become something much more exciting and engaging while calling for questions to be made about natures role in our man-made, concrete jungle life.
Continuing this rabbit hole research, I also found Bernie Krause who did a TED Talk about the voices of the natural world. Bernie Krause breaks down the elements of soundscapes while also showing his research into changes environments go through when they are altered by humans.
Returning to researching the field of sound art, I have also found some interesting installations from artists who play with the perception of sound. Installation artist Vanta Lambrecht Ward and sound artist Rachel Ní Chuinn have collaborated to create a playful sound installation.
From the works of triggering geolocated soundscapes to art installations, both kinds of practices call for a unique audience experience. The piece above works well to create an intimate space that holds soundscapes for audiences to listen to. The work approaches the idea of exploring perceptions while also working to alter the way that visual and audible waves resonate with the participant. The addition of ‘Head Spaces’ is quite a unique an interesting way to present this work and is somewhat inspiring me to think about the way in which sound can be presented to audiences.
These creative artists and artworks have opened up some avenues that my project can go down and explore. While being careful not to imitate these works, I plan to use these selected artists as a means of inspiration and a starting point when thinking about what I would like to create for this subject. The theme of nature/natural vs manmade is an interesting concept, one that has been done before but has plenty of avenues to explore. So with these creative artists and their artworks in mind, there are a few ideas of projects that I could create and concepts I could explore which I will delve into in the next blog post instalment.