SoundFjord selects artists from an open call to exhibit. Calls are currently on a rolling basis. Click here for information on the gallery itself. Click here for an application form to submit proposals. Please submit by email only. Send your proposals on the application form provided to: applications[at]soundfjord.org.uk
We select on merit alone and do not differentiate nor favour a particular sex, colour or creed when selecting works.
The Memory [box] Room
Exhibition: 23 March – 07 June 2013
SoundFjord, Unit 3b – Studio 28, 28 Lawrence Road, LONDON, N15 4ER
Opening hours: THURS: 2-8pm | FRI - SUN: 2pm-6pm | or by appointment (RSVP)
The Memory Room is a project by the Cork-based multimedia artist Danny McCarthy, whose pioneering art practice explores a combination of visual and auditory experiences. This new work consists of an ongoing series of installations in conjunction with a new book and CD published by the Irish sound art label, Farpoint Recordings. The project is curated by Anthony Kelly.
Opening - publication launch and performance: WED 22 May 2013 | 7:30-9:30pm | FREE | Reservation Tickets: www.memoryroomlaunchandperformance.eventbrite.com With performances by The Quiet Club (Danny McCarthy and Mick O’Shea) and special guest, David Toop.
“In conversation” and performance event: SAT 01 June 2013 | 2:00-5:00pm | FREE | Tickets: www.memoryroomconversationandperformance.eventbrite.com With performances by Danny McCarthy, and Anthony Kelly and David Stalling of Farpoint Recordings.
Through the use of personal materials gathered from his past and by using other related ephemera, the artist seeks to reach back in time on a 'psycho-sonic' journey, re-establishing old connections and reviving random fragments of lost memories and locating them in the now. This is achieved through the use of sounds, text and found objects that are installed in specially chosen locations throughout the space.
While these explorations may often connect specifically with aspects of McCarthy’s youth and early adulthood in his home-town of Mallow, Co. Cork (his father’s life as a blacksmith/farrier, nights spent playing rock-and-roll in the local dance-hall, early forays into improvisation), there are also meditations of a less specific and more abstracted nature. These are fleeting and often loosely threaded together, but always accessible, thus encouraging people to explore their own inner soundscape.
From 22 May until 07 June, the exhibition space at SoundFjord, London will play host to The Memory [box] Room, a further exploration and reconfiguration of the themes from this evolving project. Residing ‘memories of place’ and past histories caged within the structure of SoundFjord will mesh and play alongside the gentle reverberations of this latest, and unique, instalment of The Memory Room.
The Memory Room project, which had its first airing at Hilltown New Music Festival in 2010, is scheduled to travel to The Room (Turin, Italy) during late 2013.
About The Memory Room publication
A new book, published by Farpoint Recordings accompanies The Memory Room installation. This book and 3” CD extend the experience of the installation itself, a further creative layer that can be taken away and absorbed by the viewer/listener at their own pace and in their own personal circumstances. Colour, and black and white photographs, drawings, and layers of text printed onto papers of varying opacity, read in combination with a sound composition contained on the CD, bring McCarthy’s ideas into the realm of the tangible.
The Memory Room book and CD is available from SoundFjord on the opening night and throughout the duration of the exhibition, as well as from Farpoint Recordings (www.farpointrecordings.com)
Danny McCarthy is a pioneering multimedia artist whose main interest lies in combining visual and auditory experiences. He continues to be a leading exponent in performance art and sound art, exhibiting and performing in Ireland and abroad. Some of his recent projects include Strange Attractor and A Rocky Road (both Crawford Gallery, 2012, 11). During August 2012, the Strange Attractor project travelled to venues in Boston and New York. He has curated many exhibitions and audio CD projects, including Sound Out (with David Toop), Bend it like Beckett and Rediscovering Locality (A Sonology of Cork Sound Art). In early 2006 he founded The Quiet Club, a floating-membership sound performance group, with Mick O’Shea. A track from their Tesla CD was included on a recent Wire magazine Tapper CD. McCarthy’s book and CD LISTEN hEAR was published by Farpoint Recordings in 2009. His new 7” vinyl single White Star Line is also available from Farpoint Recordings.
Anthony Kelly is an artist who works in a variety of media including sound, video, painting & print. His work concentrates on the shifting and fragmentary nature of sensory experience. Since graduating from Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology (IADT) with a degree in Fine Art. He has exhibited nationally and internationally, including Ireland, England, America, Australia & Canada. As an improvisor he has played with Jed Speare, The Quiet Club, Stephen Vitiello, Jennifer Walshe, David Toop, Barbara Lüneburg, Steve Roden, Alessandro Bosetti, Soun.din, Jesse Ronneau, Paul Hegarty amongst others. He maintains an ongoing collaboration with David Stalling. Together they make sound & video installations, improvise together as a duo and also run the sound art label Farpoint Recordings. Over the past few years David Stalling and Anthony Kelly have curated sound and video related programmes & events for Hilltown New Music Festival, Solus Film Collective and Farpoint Recordings.
Yann Novak | Stillness.Subtropical / Stillness.Oceanic | 04.VIII.2010 - 25.IX.2010
Private View | Stillness.Subtropical | 03.VIII.2010 | 7-9pm | RSVP
Private View | Stillness.Oceanic | 04.IX.2010 | 7-9pm | RSVP
A beautifully crafted and autobiographical, immersive work of sound and vision.
Contact the gallery for further information and click here for a press release
Song-Ming Ang | You and I | 13.X.2010 - 27.XI.2010
End of Show Celebration | You and I |27.XI.2010 | 7-9pm | RSVP
A conceptually-driven interactive work, referencing mix tape culture and the personal resonance of music on individuals.
Contact the gallery for further information. A press release will be released shortly.
N.B. During the exhibition the gallery will be open by appointment only, except Saturday 23 October, and 06 and 27 November 2010, when the gallery will be open from 11-5pm without prior arrangement. Feel free to make an informal appointment any time up to 6pm, from Wednesday to Saturday, during the duration of the show.
You & I | Mixtapes! Write a letter to Song-Ming Ang and he will compile a personalised mix CDR for you.
In your letter tell him a few things about yourself, preferably something personal – a memory, a secret, a compulsion, a habit, a relationship, an experience, an ambition.
Song-Ming will use this letter as the basis for his selection of audio material. The more detailed and specific your letter is, the more he will be able to customise the recording for you.
Please mark your letter 'You & I', and write on only one side of each sheet. Send your letter to:
SoundFjord | Unit 3b – Studio 28 | 28 Lawrence Road | London N15 4ER | UK
Rie Nakajima with Ken Bodden | I Can Hear It | 11.XII.2010 – 29.I.2011 | Wed – Sat | noon – 6pm
Opening Event | Saturday 11.XII.2010 | 7-9pm | RSVP
Radio show | Framework:afield | Resonance 104.4FM / resonancefm.com | Sunday 19 December | 10pm
Download here: www.archive.org/details/2010.12.19FrameworkRadio
SoundFjord is delighted to present the work of Rie Nakajima working with Ken Bodden. Rie is an artist working with installation, performance and composition. Ken works as a piano tuner and has collaborated with Rie on a number of listening related works over the past three years.
I Can Hear It is a research project first instigated in the spring of 2007 and continuing on, in various guises, into 2010. Rie uses this research to explore sound and tactility in her sculptural practice and her fascinating with the process of tuning instruments, in this case the piano.
Please contact the gallery if you would like a press release or to RSVP to the opening.
SAM/OTO Project | Rolf Julius & Miki Yui | Lost Sounds | 11-13.II.2011 (Café Oto) - 15.II-05.III.2011 (SoundFjord) | Private View: 15 February 2011 | 7-9pm | RSVP | Further information
We are sorry to announce that Rolf Julius passed away on 21st of January 2011.
In keeping with Rolf’s wishes, the Lost Sounds performance and exhibition will still go ahead as planned. He had been working for some time on these new pieces and left detailed plans of how they should be installed and performed should he not be able to be present.
The pieces represent Rolf’s most recent work and we are extremely grateful to both him and his family for enabling us to show them. We hope this event is a fitting tribute to both him and his work.
Lost Sounds collaborator Miki Yui had been in regular contact with Rolf until his death and will be present both to perform and install her own work and to oversee the installation and performance of Rolf’s pieces.
Our thoughts are with Rolf Julius' family and friends.
The first UK exhibition by late German artist Rolf Julius and Japanese artist Miki Yui, Lost Sounds is a collaborative experiment in sound performance and installation, exploring sounds, the environment, objects and one’s visual and acoustic perception.
Yui and Julius’ collaboration will begin with an evening concert that will form the foundations for an installation that will reside within the different architectural spaces of Café Oto and SoundFjord.
Utilising sounds collected during their performance as a point of departure, artefacts found within Café Oto’s four walls will be given unfamiliar lives. During the hubbub of usual café life, furniture, cutlery, utilitarian objects and other items still to be imagined will be reinvigorated to those that care to listen.
The installation will further develop in a migration to SoundFjord, after the two-day settlement at the café. The work will remain here, open to the public until 5th March.
www.mikiyui.com | www.cortexathletico.com | www.estatic.it (Gallery representing Yui and Julius) | www.rienakajima.com
Produced by: Rie Nakajima in collaboration with Helen Frosi of SoundFjord as part of SAM/OTO.
As an ongoing series of research and experiment-led, short-run exhibitions, R/E: focuses on new and previously unexhibited works. The remit of R/E: is to foster a nucleus for debate and to encourage the questioning of sound practice and its concerns; to act as a platform for works at a pivotal stage in their development/production; and to provide the artist and the work with space for contemplation, within a nurturing environment, whilst the work is exhibited to the general public.
Drone Room | Date: 07-12 March 2011 | noon-6pm
After Show Celebration: 12 March | 7-9pm | RSVP
The Drone Room is the resonating chamber of an interactive musical instrument in which both the perfomer and audience are in the belly of the instrument they’re hearing. To become the performer, an audience member simply steps up and takes control of the interface.
Exploring ideas of change and control, the drone room subverts traditional synthesiser design by allowing the player real-time access to elements that are normally fixed and hidden in the depths of traditional synthesisers. Giving access to the underlying wave shapes from which the sound is constructed, attention is drawn to the subtleties of timbre in time and space that often get lost amongst the higher levels of musical form and structure. Small changes to the shape of a sound wave can result in dramatic changes to the character and experience of that sound both as a direct consequence of the change and as a result of the complex interactions that happen when different sounds interact in space.
The listener/performer is encouraged to explore these changes in the character and experience of sound spatially, temporally and through direct interaction with the abstractions we use to describe the fundamental attributes of sound in the digital world.
Tim Yates is currently studying for an MMus in composition at the Royal College of Music, with a special interest in electronic and electro-acoustic composition. He is a founder member and organiser of the college laptop orchestra and runs the college free improvisation group. He has also studied Philosophy at the University of Leeds, Classical Guitar Performance at Trinity College of Music, and spent time working as a database developer and IT teacher.
Tim is particularly interested in exploring the way that we listen to and interact with musical materials and instruments in the digital domain, and in finding new ways of making and listening to music that make use of the extraordinary power that new technologies offer. He designs and builds software instruments for laptop orchestra, solo performance and gallery installations and is particularly interested in finding ways that novel musical interactions can be facilitated by the use of digital technology. An integral part of this work is the exploration of the space between composition, performance and improvisation using both the electronic and acoustic sound sources (including traditional instruments).
As a performer, he is also an active member of the free improvisation community in London, in particular as a regular attendee of Eddie Prevost’s influential free-improvisation workshops.
Exquisite Corpse | International Group Show | 13-30 April 2011 | Private View: 12 April 2011 | 7:30-9:30pm | RSVP
In April 2010, before SoundFjord opened it’s doors to the public, we (the creative team at SoundFjord) devised a plan for an exhibition, populated by artists’ works created using the ‘Exquisite Corpse’ model as a point of departure.
The Exquisite Corpse is a method made popular by the Surrealists, and is similar to Consequences, the old parlour game. Words, images or sounds are collectively assembled in a specific way, using rules set in advance, for instance, one is only allowed to see/hear the last section/measure of what was previously contributed.
This exhibition documents the works produced, and finally, reveals the artists who worked on the project and whom have hitherto remained anonymous.
Emmanuel Spinelli | Padstow Cosmesis | 04 - 28 May 2011
"The 8.1 channel installation, explores the soundscape of the Obby Oss ritual in Padstow (Cornwall) on the 1st of May every year. To be more precise, it explores the day before Mayday and the day after. It aims to celebrate the sonic beauty of the place and its community as well as highlighting the socio-political issues of this highly touristic centre where most locals cannot afford to live there and most of the old village now belongs to second-home owners and is slowly loosing its nature." - Emmanuel Spinelli
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Emmanuel is a composer, sound designer and music lecturer and has collaborated with film/theatre companies and artists in France, Switzerland and the UK. He has been involved in electro-acoustic composition, live electronics and free improvisation since 1998.
Increasingly, Emmanuel has become more and more interested in issues related to soundscape transformations, manipulations of historical data, and memory, particularly in relation to the Holocaust. He is also interested in the potential of free improvisation and live electronics (Max/Msp) to develop interactive audio-visual works.
Emmanuel is developing his compositions and research around the notion of Acoustic-phenotypology, that is to say the perception of individual identities through sound. His practice, at one level or another, explores human presence and history, through the cognition of the disembodied voice, sounding body, and environment.
Catherine Clover | birdbrain | 18 June - 30 July 2011
Opening: Sat 18 June | 4-6pm | RSVP
Activity: Bird Survey (in association with World Listening Day): Sun 17 July 2011 | 8am | Tottenham Marshes | Free - donations welcome | RSVP
birdbrain looks at our relationship with urban crows and seagulls and explores our mixed relationship with these common noisy and highly intelligent birds through voice and language (animal/human), including the spoken and written word (human). While we admire these birds’ obvious abilities in terms of survival, intelligence and ingenuity we also feel threatened by these very attributes that we share with them.
The project consists of audiovisual installation work including field recordings, bird mimicry, spoken and written texts as well as an artist’s book posing as a kind of mock field guide (which is for sale at the gallery during the exhibition for £5). Four performers and ten writers have contributed to the project.
The four performers are:
Kate Hunter (PhD research candidate Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia)
Vanessa Chapple (Performer, dramaturge and director, Melbourne, Australia)
Penny Baron (Performer and director, Melbourne, Australia)
Melissa Alley (Artist and performer, London, UK)
The ten writers are:
Geraldine Barlow (Senior Curator, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia)
Giovanni Aloi (St Mary University London and Editor of Antennae, UK)
Steve Baker (Emeritus Professor of Art, University of Central Lancashire, UK)
Clare Halstead (Arts writer, UK)
Cathy Lane (Sound artist and co-director of CRISAP, London, UK)
Andrew Whitehouse (Teaching Fellow, Dept of Anthropology, Univ of Aberdeen, UK)
Robin Tassie (Writer, UK)
Michele Faguet (Arts writer, Berlin, Germany)
Jessica Ullrich (Universitat der Kunst, Berlin, Germany)
Rene ten Bos (Prof of Philosophy/Organisational Theory, Radboud Univ, Holland)
Read more about Cath, Birdbrain and her worK here:
Design Federation AU
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Catherine Clover was born and brought up in London, UK, and trained at Wimbledon School of Art/North East London Polytechnic in Fine Art [Painting]. After several years practice based in Angel Studios, EC1, she pursued a residency with Gertrude Street Artists Spaces in Melbourne, Australia and has been based there since the mid 90s. Her current practice explores sound, digital imaging and installation to look at ideas surrounding our changing relationship with nature, and in particular, other animals. The everyday - the quotidian, the common - inform this exploration.
Recent projects and installations include Calling the Birds II Trocadero Art Space Melbourne AU Oct 2010; Pigeon Post Mailbox 141 Melbourne AU June 2010; billing and cooing Billboard@Trocadero Melbourne AU May 2010; Sounds of my Neighbourhood MusikTriennale Koln Germany May 2010; Alternating Current: Sound Art Now Dragonfly Festival Sweden April 2010; coroocoo Anna Leonowens Gallery NSCAD University Halifax NS Canada Feb 2010; Pestival Radio broadcast on Resonance FM, London UK 2009; Minding Animals conference and exhibition The Lock Up Newcastle NSW AU 2009; Sound Diaries Conference Presentation Oxford Brookes University Oxford UK.
This project is funded by Arts Victoria.
Simon Whetham | Active Crossover | Exhibition, Performances and Workshop | 10 August – 01 October 2011
Exhibition – 10 August - 01 October 2011 | Noon-6pm | free | Venue: SoundFjord, Unit 3b - Studio 28, 28 Lawrence Road, London, N15 4ER.
Opening night event – 10 August 2011 | doors 8pm | entry free | Venue: Cafe Oto, 18-22 Ashwin Street, Dalston, London, E8 3DL. With crossover performances from Scanner, Iris Garrelfs, Lee Gamble and Simon Whetham.
Closing week event – 28 September 2011 | doors 7:30pm | entry free | Venue: secret location - email us for details! With crossover performances from Douglas Benford, Martin Clark, John Grzinich, Kaffe Matthews, Jo Thomas & Simon Whetham.
Workshop and presentation – 01 October 2011 | 1pm | free | Venue: SoundFjord, Unit 3b - Studio 28, 28 Lawrence Road, London, N15 4ER. Simon will also present past and present work, and introduce participants to ‘Active Listening’.
Active Crossover is an electronic circuit used in speaker construction, which enables a speaker to transmit sound information consistently and accurately across space. Simon Whetham’s project reflects this process, both in terms of the way the space is actually set up, and in the way the work continues to emerge out of social relationships formed through travel and communication. Simon’s work is as much about the ‘social’ as it is the ‘sonic’.
The installation consists of two darkened, acoustically treated spaces that can be entered into from the main exhibition space. In one space is a surround sound composition created from field recordings made while Simon was artist-in-residence in Tallinn, Estonia, and also from Bristol, Brighton, Bracknell, Reading, Liverpool, Leeds and now London, charting the journey the project has taken so far. The second space features pieces by artists that Simon has performed and collaborated with through running the project, and through their ongoing cultural exchanges, recordings and events. If you stay in the main exhibition space you can hear the sound bleeding out and mingling from both spaces, forming a new and evolving communal work.
Integral to the project is a series of performance evenings which investigate improvisation and collaborative working methods, as well as an ‘active listening’ workshop. The experience of listening reflects the conditions of the work’s creation, and the conditions of his own journey – one of interpersonal exchange and interaction – around Eastern Europe and now the UK.
Simon composes with ‘field recordings’ – sound recordings made of the immediate environment using an array of microphones and a recording device. Field recordings are a form of sonic documentation, but by overlaying and reordering them Simon has created a new configuration, no longer a straightforward representation of a real place or situation, but rather a collage of places and times. It acts a lot like memory; based in real experiences and places, but altered by one’s personal and emotional recollection of them; reordered and recomposed – like memories – by influences other than the pure data involved. The work, purely sonic, may remind you of listening to a film without seeing the screen.
Simon Whetham has performed extensively and shown in many galleries in the UK and in Europe. His sound compositions have been released through specialist record labels Monochrome Vision, Unfathomless, Dragon’s Eye, Impulsive Habitat, 1000fussler, 3Leaves, Kaon, Trente Oiseaux, Entr’acte, Gruenrekorder, Con-V, Mystery Sea, Install and Lens Records, with forthcoming releases from Cronica and And/OAR.
Cast and Figment: Radio as Metaphor and as Such | Curated by Matthew MacKisack | 15 October - 05 November 2011
This is an ONLINE PROGRAMME OF LIVE RADIO EVENTS, however we will be open to the public for opening and closing celebrations with live performances. Please see below for details.
Programme: SATURDAY 15 October – SATURDAY 05 November 2011 | Opening: SATURDAY 15 October 2011 | Richard Hughes’ A Comedy of Danger (Broadcast 6pm sharp) | Celebrations: 5-7pm | Free | RSVP
An apparatus, whose technical peculiarity simply consists in enabling sounds made at a particular spot to be simultaneously reproduced in as many and as far removed places as one wishes by disrespectfully breaking through boundaries of class and country, signifies a spiritual event of primary importance.1
It is considered unquestionable that technique and science undermine superstition. But the class character of society sets substantial limits here too. Take America. There, Church sermons are broadcast by radio, which means that the radio is serving as a means of spreading prejudices. Such things don’t happen here, I think – the Society of Friends of Radio watch over this, I hope? (Laughter and applause) Under the socialist system science and technique as a whole will undoubtedly be directed against religious prejudices, against superstition, which reflects the weakness of man before man or before nature. What, indeed, does a “voice from heaven” amount to when there is being broadcast all over the country a voice from the Polytechnical Museum? (Laughter)2
Cast and Figment consists of a series of live broadcasts by artists and writers, exploring the medium's aesthetic, political and ontological implications, making it produce concepts, images and problems.
Cast and Figment can be heard, with information on the programme, at castandfigment.org .You may also listen here:
From MONDAY 17 October, each episode begins at 19:30 sharp and lasts no more than 45 minutes. N.B.Our opening performance will be broadcast on SATURDAY 15 October at 6pm
With broadcasts from: David Berridge, Bridget Crone, Karen Di Franco, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Homeland, David Howells, Mikko Canini, Matthew MacKisack, Tamarin Norwood, Hal Silver, Dan Smith, Jonathan Trayner, and others to be announced.
The programme begins with celebratory drinks and a public performance and live broadcast at SoundFjord, of Richard Hughes' A Comedy of Danger on SATURDAY 15 October (5-7pm; performance at 6pm). And continues with performances every MONDAY to WEDNESDAY, at 7:30pm. The programme concludes on SATURDAY 05 November. Check our websites for further information on this and all events!
Further information: mmackisack.org
1 Rudolf Arnheim, Radio: an Art of Sound, 1936 | 2 Leon Trotsky, Radio, Science, Technique and Society, 1926
Schedule - Week 3 (Final week)
Saturday 05 November | Closing event - 2:30-5pm
3.00pm: Dan Smith, Modern Conditions (2010/11)
3.30pm: Mikko Canini, title tbc
4.oopm: Bridget Crone, EASY LISTENTING MEETS FLICKER-TIME /A conversation between analogue and digital broadcast transmissions about time and affect (2011) Audio/Video work
On the last day of Cast and Figment SoundFjord is open to the public. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to attend, and please arrive before 3.00pm, when the final transmission will begin with a live reading by Dan Smith.
Modern Conditions is comprised of the words of radio broadcasts made by H.G. Wells for the BBC, drawing out a sense of utopian potential and possibility within these extraordinary recordings made for a mass audience.
This is followed at around 3.30pm by another live reading in which Mikko Canini considers White Noise on the Radio.
Most analyses of media draw a historical line from the telegraph, through radio, to the internet, and do so by focusing – for example in McLuhan’s analysis – on form rather than content. Thinking, instead, about the form of the content produced by these technologies would divide the historical stream into two groups: one that begins with the telegraph and leads to the telephone, and one that begins with radio and leads to television and the internet. While these groups might conventionally be distinguished in terms of public versus private receptions, the distinction to be pursued here is the capacity of the latter group to produce noise.
The programme concludes with the 1st screening – and 2nd broadcast of the soundtrack – of Bridget Crone‘s video Easy Listening Meets Flicker-Time, a “conversation between analogue and digital broadcast transmissions about time and affect”.
By 5.00pm we will be ‘off air’. Please return to this website and subscribe to our newsletter for announcements regarding future auditions of Cast and Figment: Radio as Metaphor and as Such.
Wednesday 02 November
The final week of Cast and Figment includes broadcasts from Mikko Canini, Bridget Crone, Karen Di Franco, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Homeland, Hal Silver, and Dan Smith. Cast and Figment ends on the afternoon of the 5th of November with a live public event at - and simultaneous broadcast from - SoundFjord (free, please rsvp here); see also castandfigment.org for details.
This evening’s broadcast begins at 7.30 with Karen Di Franco‘s Concrete Radio. Concrete Radio attempts to describe the relationship between producer and the originator by exploring the liminal space of transmission and reception. Broadcasting within the Soundfjord studio, Music for the Next to Die will present a fractured dialogue for two radios, describing the economics of traversing the nameless zones, overlays of the near future and recent past as performed on the gold trading floor of the World Trade Centre and how to make the most of Time. Click here for programme details of Music for the Next to Die.
Next Lawrence Abu Hamdan will introduce a new work from the Aural Contract Audio Archive. Part of an ongoing research project into the politics of language and the conditions of voice faced by the Druze community in Palestine/Israel, On the Borders of Bilingualism, writes the artist, “offers an account of how borders, jurisdictions and colonial occupation become inscribed and worn on the voice of its subjects.” The work will then be discussed within the context of the Aural Contract Audio Archive (accessible here) by Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Karen Di Franco and Matthew MacKisack.
Two artist-groups take to the airwaves this evening. At 7.30, Hal Silver speaks.
Hal Silver has collected transcripts from a wide-range of speeches, manifestos and articles of public address, focusing on those whose rhetoric assumes the mantle of speaking on behalf of “the people”, the singular that speaks to and for the plural. Hal Silver will re-make these speeches – edited and redacted – as six voices speaking the terms of collective command and affirmation, sometimes overlapping, sometimes punctuating the silence.
Then, at around 7.45, the collaborative project Homeland will hold A Conversation Around Presence, a broadcast for both analogue and online radio. Depending on their chosen medium, listeners will encounter one half of a conversation which addresses what it means to be live, in dialogue and in occupancy, as well as it’s own fragmented nature. As a framework, the conversation opens up to a range of concerns explored through Homeland including communication across boundaries, the domestic space, utopian potentials and the psychological effects of technology and capitalism.
Monday 31 October
Questions relating to such ‘affective modulation’ can then be heard at around 7.50, in the soundtrack to Bridget Crone‘s Easy Listening Meets Flicker-Time (2011). Based in part on Welles’ infamous broadcast, the monologue is “a conversation between analogue and digital broadcast transmissions about time and affect”; the Easy Listening Meets Flicker-Time video will be shown in its entirety at Cast and Figment‘s closing event, at SoundFjord, on the 5th of November.
Schedule - Week 2
Cast and Figment continues into its second week with performances and readings from David Berridge, Claire Chard, Sidsel Christensen and Matthew MacKisack. Further details to follow!
Wednesday 26th October
First on this evening, a short work for radio by Andy Weir, The direct result of considered planning churning new courses creating new concepts (2011):
‘Nothing more, we are nothing more of the today of which we are a part. No, we need something more. A call from the future hurtling towards the past and back, picked up on antennae and shot through the city. The air gets thick, so I can feel it, then it gets thicker, so I can’t breathe it. Oohs and Aahs.’
This is followed at about 7.32 by Jonathan Trayner‘s Tales of the Woodland Folk(2011), re-broadcast after technical problems last week.
‘A children’s story, this radio play is the tale of an encounter between Mr Rabbit and Ms Squirrel discussing the best way of governing the Woodland-folk. As the play unfolds the characters argue whether it is better to rule the forest using ignorance; which is Mr Rabbit’s argument, provided by ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tze or terror; which is Ms Squirrel’s preferred option, echoing the words of French revolutionary Robespierre.’ Ms Squirrel: Stephanie Dickinson, Mr Rabbit: Vince Stephen, Narrator: Jonathan Trayner, Music: Vince Stephen, Production: Bill Kenny and Michael Page, Assistant: Jennifer Pengilly, Script: Jonathan Trayner.
A pre-recorded discussion between Jonathan Trayner and Matthew MacKisack followsTales of the Woodland Folk.
Lastly tonight, at around 7.45, a live reading from the writer David Berridge. With A Hedgerow Doesn’t Have to Leave the House, Berridge intends to:
‘… explore the contradictions of radio as a mainstream source of news, weather, DJ and shipping forecast, alongside its role as a model of experimental poetic communication for Marinetti, Khlebnikov and Cocteau.  I propose to explore this through an act of storytelling in which a story of the countryside extends its porousness to a Hackney landscape in which it is told again and again. I would like to explore how experimental ideas of radio can be absorbed into the texture of a written narrative that is then read aloud… I would like to test how much a story of one place can be filled by the details of many others, in a manner akin to moving quickly between radio stations… I would like to explore how much and in what manner this storytelling can open up to reflections upon the role of radio and sound within histories of experimental poetry/ prose. I have been making a study of “silent sound” in Claude Cahun’s Disavowels and am interested how this could be entwined within the narrative I am telling so that each becomes a way of elucidating the other…’
 Rubén Gallo, “Jean Cocteau’s Radio Poetry” in Marjorie Perloff and Craig Dworkin eds. The Sound of Poetry/ The Poetry of Sound (The University of Chicago Press, 2009), 205-218.
Tuesday 25th October
Tonight’s broadcast begins with a live lecture from David Howells, A Voice in the Dark: Rhetoric for Radio. Howells introduces the lecture with the following:
“For all our belief in rational discourse, we know that words – the very stuff of thought – are dangerous. They are not only a reflection on the world, they also have the power to change it, to call things into being, for good or ill. And our only defence against words is to use more words in turn.
Rhetoric was – is - the political art of persuasion, born out of the need to make laws and customs, culture out of nature, to civilise men, and to civilise the power of the voice, to make it public. But we have come to distrust rhetoric as misleading and destructive, and it is now difficult to use the word in any positive sense. ‘Rhetoric’, if it does not mean an empty display of language, suggests the use of it to some ulterior purpose.
Nevertheless, my purpose in this lecture is to consider whether artists may not, after all, make something useful out of rhetoric or if – as Aristotle maintained – rhetoric is any case a universal human trait, whether they may at least come to recognise themselves as speaking and working rhetorically. And there are particular reasons for them to do so now: given the ‘performative’ turn of contemporary practice, and a political and economic context which will not leave any public act untouched.”
Howells’ lecture is followed at around 8pm by Claire Chard reading extracts from T W Adorno‘s 1936 analysis of Martin Luther Thomas’ radio addresses.
A product of Adorno’s research into the social reception and significance of radio in the 1930s, The Psychological Technique… analyses the rhetorical devices of right-wing Christian broadcasting: a rhetoric, Adorno makes clear, intended to produce a submissive, psychologically regressed audience. Extracts here are from the book’s fourth section, ‘Ideological Bait’, in which Adorno examines the form and content of Thomas’ claims regarding the contemporaneous economic recession.
Cast and Figment then presents a clip from a more recent broadcast by another right-wing demagogue, Rush Limbaugh, in which he declares that Democrat interest in Darfur is due to the desire to secure the “black voting bloc”. The clip, from 2007, includes a variety of rhetorical devices clearly recognisable from Adorno’s analysis of Thomas. “You’ve got it”, Limbaugh tells the caller, “Now you just have to believe your own instincts”.
Monday 24th October:
At 7.30, hear Study for Composition I (audio) (2009), by Sidsel Christensen, with Rohid Juneja.
In an extract from Christensen’s ongoing experiments in hypnotic regression, the hypnotised artist narrates the rise and fall of a secret cult in ancient Greece. Separated from the video to which it has previously been the soundtrack, the monologue encourages the listener to imaginatively align themselves with the narrator’s psychical explorations. In turn, radio’s atavistic promise, what Gaston Bachelard saw as its ability to evoke collective archetypes in the creation of domestic reveries – effectively relocating the psychoanalytical session to the airwaves* – is made powerfully manifest.
Study for Composition I is followed at 7.50pm by Matthew MacKisack‘s Hörspiel (The Tribulations of Usefulness) (2010):
“Looking from one window, you see the Statue of Liberty; from a window in another wall, you see a daffodil. A daffodil is sitting on top of the torch held up by the Statue of Liberty. A daffodil is hidden inside the torch held up by the Statue of Liberty.”**
Hörspiel is a narrative radio play in which ‘remote viewing’ – a form of codified extra-sensory perception – is presented as a metaphor for radiophonic experience. Based on documentation of British military research into remote viewing***, the play also draws on the histories of radio drama and technology’s interface with the supernatural. The resulting scenario describes – potentially, enacts, for the auditor – the attempt to instrumentalise reverie.
The cast of Hörspiel are: Olivia Armstrong as the Supervisor, Simon King as the Monitor and Adam Loxley as the Subject. It was written by Matthew MacKisack with Adam Loxley.
*In his 1951 essay ‘Reverie and Radio’, collected in The Right to Dream, 1971, trans. J A Underwood
** From U Neisser and N Kerr, ‘Spatial and Mnemonic Properties of Visual Images’, in Cognitive Psychology, 5, 1973
*** See http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FreedomOfInformation/DisclosureLog/SearchDisclosureLog/RemoteViewing.htm
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Schedule - Week 1
6pm: Richard Hughes / Matthew MacKisack, (A Comedy of) Danger, 1924/2011, performed by Carla Espinoza, Lauren McCullum and Leo Ashizawa.
7.30pm: David Howells, A Voice in the Dark, 2011. (to be rescheduled)
8pm: Leon Trotsky, Inaugural Address at the First All-Union Congress of the Society of Friends of Radio (abridged), 1926, read by Claire Chard. (NOW BROADCASTING at 7:30pm)
7.30pm: Tamarin Norwood, Musica Practica, 2010-11; contextual discussion.
7:30pm: Walter Benjamin, The Lisbon Earthquake, 1931, read by Katherine Lunney
8pm: Jonathan Trayner, Tales of the Woodland Folk (Ignorance or Terror), 2011; contextual discussion.
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Opening Celebrations | 15 October 2011 | 5-7pm | SoundFjord | RSVP
Inaugural performance of the Cast and Figment programme, performed live at SoundFjord and simultaneously broadcast here and at castandfigment.org:
(A Comedy of) Danger
The Radio of the Future – the central tree of our consciousness – will inaugurate new ways to cope with our endless undertakings and will unite all mankind. … The main Radio station, that stronghold of steel, where clouds of wires cluster like strands of hair, will surely be protected by a sign with a skull and crossbones and the familiar word “Danger”, since the least disruption of Radio operations would produce a mental blackout over the entire country, and temporary loss of consciousness.*
The first radio play written for French radio was Maremonto, by Maurice Vinot and Pierre Cusy. Its planned broadcast in 1922 was prevented by the Sea Ministry: the realistic dramatization of the sinking of an ocean-going liner was deemed liable to panic the audience.** A similarly naturalistic disaster narrative, the first play written for British radio was Richard Hughes’ Danger, a one-act melodrama set in an unlit and flooding coal mine. As the author later remarked.
Our audience were used to using their eyes; this was a blind man’s world we were introducing them to. In time they would accept its conventions but how would they react on this first occasion? Better make it easy for them, just this once. Something which happens in the dark, for instance, so the characters themselves keep complaining they can’t see. Perhaps we could get the listener to turn out his lights and listen in the dark.***
‘Listen in the dark’ is exactly what the Radio Times advised its readers to do. In an attempt to foreground the ethics of making it ‘easy for them’, of the naturalistic illusion, and in the spirit of a Khlebnikovian ‘flight from the I’, Richard Hughes’ original script has been re-imagined and edited according to contemporaneous Russian formalist theories – themselves a response to Futurist aesthetics – ofostranenie, or defamiliarisation.
* Velimir Khlebnikov, The Radio of the Future, 1921
** see Tim Crook, Radio Drama: Theory and Practice, 1999
*** Richard Hughes, The Birth of Radio Drama, B.B.C. Home Service, 1956
Written by Richard Hughes
Revised by Matthew MacKisack
Performed by Carla Espinoza, Lauren McCullum and Leo Ashizawa
Singing Windows | Ghost Quartet | 02-04 December 2011
Shirly Pegna + Wajid Yaseen
SoundFjord is pleased to host sound-artists Shirley Pegna and Wajid Yaseen for a two-day work-in-progress session exploring the resonant frequencies of objects in space, from Friday 02 – Sunday 04 December 2011, noon-6pm.
Audiences are openly invited to interact and critique the work. The artists will be present to answer questions and to talk about the work and the ideas surrounding it throughout the research project.
Two separate installations, provisionally entitled Singing Windows and Ghost Quartet will explore sound in relation to objects, the gallery space, and indeed people themselves. Portable transducers will act as amplifiers thereby allowing observers and participants to expand their understanding of the properties of sound through a given object, and to explore their own association of place and sound.
During the research project, the artists will be collaborating and pooling their experience of working in diverse places and settings to investigate how sound travels through different materials, and to explore the compositional choices that can be draw from sonified objects.
The facilities and space at SoundFjord will allow initial explorations within an interior gallery setting, with the long-term goal of developing work that can be presented inside and outside of a gallery.
Shirley Pegna – a research student from Oxford Brookes University, has been looking at sound waves travelling through different materials ranging from very long distance travelling sound waves and signals local and domestic sites.
Further information: www.shirleypegna.com
Wajid Yaseen – his work focuses on relationships between the body and sound, and manifests in a diverse range of practices from sound sculptures, installations, electroacoustic composition, tangible interfacing, and live performance. He is the co-founder of the destructivist event Scrapclub (scrapclub.co.uk) and co-director of the sound art collective, Modus Arts (modusarts.org).
Residency: Patrick Farmer | Collocate | 07 - 20 December 2011 | Visitors by appointment only.
Mem1 (Mark and Laura Cetilia) | Visiting Hours II
Visiting Hours II is a site-specific audiovisual installation that will be created by Mark and Laura Cetilia for SoundFjord during their residency in January 2012. The piece will document Mark and Laura's experience of visiting the gallery and the borough of Haringey where the gallery resides. Mem1 will make use of location recordings, captured radio spectra and recordings made in the space with their musical instruments (cello, voice, and analogue electronics, as well as custom software/hardware that allow for real-time manipulation of these sound sources), along with locally recorded video that will be subtly manipulated during playback in reaction to the soundscape Mem1 will seamlessly construct.
Visiting Hours II is the second work in a series that began as part of the Laptopia #5 exhibition at the Museums of Bat Yam (Israel) in 2009. Since 2003, Mark and Laura have collaborated on numerous performances and fixed media works in their electro-acoustic ensemble Mem1. Their process generally involves a number of improvisational sessions in which they find new techniques that they can then weave into a loose narrative structure. The duo then create unique interpretations of this narrative each time a given piece is performed. In Visiting Hours II, Mem1 will challenge this methodology by each alternating solo recording sessions in the exhibition space and gathering sound and video recordings of the immediate vicinity over the course of the residency. This process will ultimately lead to the creation of a densely layered audio-visual composition that explores Mem1's understanding of the environment they have experienced during their residency at SoundFjord.
Complimentary to the exhibition will be a live performance by Mem1 and special guest Attila Faravelli and Daniel Thomas Freeman at Cafe Oto on MONDAY 16 January 2012. For further information click here; and for ticket sales, click here.
Come join Mem1 and SoundFjord for a drop of wine at the opening of the AV work on the evening of 21st January 2011, 5-7pm. All are welcome. RSVP.
For press release: Mem1 | Visiting Hours II
For further information on the artists please visit: www.mem1.com
Examples of past work/live performance:
Various Artists | Sublimation: An Exercise in the Immersive (Curated by Helen Frosi (SoundFjord), France Jobin and Yann Novak)
Exhibition at Oboro, Montreal | 03 March - 07 April 2012
Please see gallery website for opening details
Vernissage: 03 March 2012, 5pm
Sublimation is an exhibition featuring a range of audio-visual works created by eight international artists, curated in response to the concept of the 'Sublime Environment': the saturation of both sonic and visual landscapes, represented by works of absorbing sound and visual art.
On the opening day Sublimation, the exhibition will be complimented by three live performances and an audio screening by ten international artists in the form of immersive sonic environments and contemplative sound sculpture.
The sensory environment of the exhibition together with the live performances and audio screening will envelop the audience in both an emotional and visceral experience: drawn equally from sonic and visual spectrums.
Further information: English: oboro.net/archive/exhib1112/05_sublimation/info_en.html
And for French readers: oboro.net/archive/exhib1112/05_sublimation/info_fr.html
Graham Dunning | For Posterity
Exhibition: 15 March – 21 April 2012 | noon-6pm | THUR-SAT & by appt.
Special Opening Hours: 15th March: 3pm-7pm
SoundFjord is closed SATURDAY 14th and SUNDAY 15th April 2012
Artist Talk: SAT 17 March 2012 | 4pm | Free entry | RSVP essential
Closing celebration: SAT 21 April 2012 | 7-9pm | All Welcome | RSVP
A domestic reel-to-reel tape recorder bought at a car-boot sale, a spool of tape still on the machine. On the tape, a family’s audio diary from 1958 to 1967. In the last entry, the parents explain to their youngest son the reasoning behind the recordings: “It's for posterity,” the father clarifies. The mother adds, “for your children, and your chi...” She is interrupted, soon the tape ends.
This new installation from artist Graham Dunning is an attentive document of his attempt to reunite the tape with its makers. Artefacts and correspondence are shown alongside the machine on which the recordings were made: the uncanny experience of disembodied voices playing through obsolete technology, a ghost in the machine.
In an age of digital media where memories – as photographs, videos and audio recordings – exist only as numbers on hard-drives and CDs, or online on a distant server, For Posterity calls into question the apparent advantages of digital over analogue technologies; the role of physical artefacts in preserving our own histories; and the function of archiving per se. Recent debates regarding online privacy focus on the personal traces we leave behind, the “right to be forgotten”, and the implications of policing this with regard to freedom of speech and censorship. These themes are also explored across the installation by way of the considered presentation of both personal and sensitive material.
Graham’s working practice deals with temporality, memory and narrative through sound, performance and installation. He is interested in people’s discarded memories and the function of archiving. Found objects, photographs and recordings feature in his work, investigating notions of the artefact and implied narrative. Experimentation is fundamental, and his practice is often informed by scientific or archaeological protocol.
Various themes and processes recur in his work including: sound and its relation to loss, nostalgia as mourning; exploring the world through listening and the specific sonic topographies of specific places; the questionable historical or other “objectivity” of an object; organising, arranging, and composing versus unpredictable inputs, random factors and chance operations; archiving, collecting and documentation in tension with ambiguity and open interpretation; and analogue and digital technologies and their (exploitable) limitations.
For press release: Graham Dunning | For Posterity
For further information on the artist: grahamdunning.com
Generously supported by ARTS COUNCIL ENGLAND
Johnny Chang and Jamie Drouin | Collected Gestures:
Opening: 17 February 2013 | performances throughout the evening: 5-8pm | Free event -RSVP | Show runs: 18-22 February 2013 | 2-6pm daily - no appointment necessary
Associated event: John Tilbury + Lee Patterson + Phil Durrant + Jamie Drouin + Angharad Davies + Johnny Chang: Variable Formations | Saturday 16 February 2013 | 8pm | Cafe OTO E8 3DL | Tickets: £8/6 adv | £10/8 door | Tickets: anothertimbre.com
Berlin-based sound artists Johnny Chang and Jamie Drouin present a new installation entitled Collected Gestures which explores connections between extraneous concert noise and the influence of ‘place’ in composition.
The central components of Collected Gestures are recordings from three improvised concerts in Geneva, Bern, and Warsaw given during the week preceding their arriving in the UK. The installation at SoundFjord will present the concert recordings, as well as field recordings made before and after the concert at the various venues, through miniature speakers arranged in a simulated stage/audience environment. Walking through the installation our attention is drawn magnetically back-and-forth between the overlapping compositions emanating from the 'stage', and the in situ sounds of voices, coffee machines, and room noises interjecting from the 'audience'.
Collected Gestures creates an evolving single composition built from the dialogue between two artists, the influence of extraneous noises in their works and, finally, the audiences experience of relating those various events within a single room.
Duncan Whitley | Sbarbi's Arrow
SoundFjord is delighted to announce its inaugural commission, Sbarbi's Arrow, an exhibition by Duncan Whitley, produced specifically for SoundFjord’s gallery space. Themes within Whitley’s work will be developed through a full programme of events taking place along side the exhibition.
Sbarbi's Arrow is the first major creative output of Whitley's study of the saeta flamenca, a form of flamenco prayer, sung to the religious images of the Catholic Easter processions in Andalucia. The exhibition has been commissioned to coincide with the movable feast of Lent and Easter.
The title refers to an 1880 text by José María Sbarbi in which he describes the saeta as "a brief, fervent spiritual maxim, capable of producing in the mind an impression similar to that caused in the body by the wound from an arrow... capable, not of riddling the heart of the most hardened or indifferent sinner with arrows, but of giving a dead man gooseflesh." Whitley searches for traces of Sbarbi's metaphorical arrow within his self-reflexive investigations in contemporary ethnography, extending the metaphor from flamenco song to processes of recording, memory and playback.
During the celebrations, Whitley will undertake further fieldwork in Seville. By sending back images and text from 'the field' to the gallery space (which will be available for the public to peruse), Whitley will attempt to create a flow of ideas between the installed gallery work – a new video animation (duration: 23:00) by the artist, in which sound and space characteristically play a driving force – its moving images and sounds, and contemporaneously collected images, and texts.
Whitley's work in 'sensuous ethnography', explores territories between ethnographic filmmaking, sound installation and soundscape. His investigations are complex, drawing on numerous themes, including: the notion of performer and performance space or context; the differences between human and the recorded voice; a sense of belonging and community; the documentation and contextualisation of ethnographic practices through a variety of media and curatorial methodologies.