Fun - if slightly nerve-wracking - to be involved in one the reading sessions for Irene Revell and Anna Barham's A Year With Stein project.
On New Year’s Eve of 1974/5 Stein’s 925 page novel was read aloud in a ‘marathon’ 48-hour reading at Artists Space in New York, organised by Alison Knowles, Annea Lockwood, Ruth Anderson and Jean Rigg, starting a tradition that has continued into the present. After a ‘mini-marathon’ in London last Summer as part of Longplayer Day we proposed to slow down the format and are committing to read the book over the whole of 2020, in 4-hour chunks roughly every four weeks on a weekend afternoon.
Chairing a Q&A at Tyneside Cinema on February 13th, 2020 with Siân Hutchings who led a performance to introduce her new film 'Quietly Beneath.'
Photographs: Adam Pugh
"Dew Pond #1" was a talk and listening session that was part of "Acoustic Ecologies: Hildegard Westerkamp and Environmental Listening" at the Attenborough Centre of Sussex University on January 31st, 2020. The sheets of paper I am holding in the first image and the participants have in subsequent photographs were letter-pressed by Alex Cooper and used to respond to the listening environment of the dew pond, marked with chalk to create soundmaps, scores, listening diaries.
Photographs: Tunde Alabi-Hundeyin
Dusk brings a shift of the senses, a change to how the world is known. A similar recalibration can happen when we choose to settle down somewhere and map what our perceptions find there.
Pictures of Alex Cooper's letter-pressed Dew Pond sheets and examples of what participants did with them.
Screening of Rupert Cox, Kozo Hiramatsu and my film, Zawawa at the Salon for Alternative Social Science Strategies at Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations (Mucem), January 10th, 2020.
Durant le bombardement d’Okinawa, en 1945, les habitants ont cherché refuge dans les grottes et les champs de canne à sucre. Ils ont forgé des souvenirs qui habitent aujourd’hui les sons de ces lieux. Un paysagiste, un acousticien et un anthropologue ont travaillé ensemble pendant dix ans pour écouter, enregistrer ces sons et leur donner sens, à travers les récits d’individus qui expriment, comme tant d’autres à Okinawa, l’expérience d’une vie suspendue entre les guerres américaines, le passé, le présent et le futur.
September 12th, 2019: at Cafe OTO for "Animal Sounds" - part of their Music and Other Living Creatures Programme, a performance-lecture that dug back to the 90s to find those points where I'd written of encounters with the more-than-human.
March 21st, 2019: at Felix Art Museum, Brussels, talking about "Concealing and Revealing The Field," Igloo White, sound as camouflage, masking, etc.
January 24th, 2019: at Iklectik for launch of Salomé Voegelin's The Political Possibility of Sound, another performance-lecture, this time mining my archive for "Thirty Years of Height," finding those moments across three decades where I'd found myself with new friends at different points above ground.
A round-up of some recent talks.
"The Near and The Far" at YARMONICS, St. Georges Theatre, Yarmouth, 21st of September. More information.
"The Ecology of Sound" at Bold Tendencies, Peckham, part of "The Dominant Eye," 20th of September, organized by Sian Hutchings and Noematic Collective. More information. Dedicated Journal of Sonic Studies site dedicated to project, including interview with me and documentation of various works.
"Zawawa: Sounds of Wind in the Sugar Cane," (with Rupert Cox and Kozo Hiramatsu), Socio-Sonic Symposium, City University, 14th of September.
"The Nature of Sound", Ace Hotel, London, with Dr. Simon Jones and Antoine Bertin, organized by super/collider, 29th of August. More information.
"The Sounds of Wind in the Sugar Cane, The Angry Roars and Sobs of the Dead: Representing Okinawan War Memories" (with Rupert Cox) at "Why Remember? Remains, Ruins, Reconstructions", Sarajevo, 27th - 30th of June. More information.
"Hear Lightning and Thunder" at LOMA (Large Objects Moving Air) conference at London College of Communication, 8th of January. More information.
Two readings from A Downland Index, one at the literary cabaret Speaky Spokey in Brighton and one at the Photographers' Gallery in London, there to support the launch of Justin Hopper's book The Old Weird Albion.
The HPNoSS (Hospital Project on Noise, Sound and Sleep) is collaborative project that aims to provide a holistic understanding of sound in the hospital environment and the intimate relationship of noise to sleep, rest, treatment and recovery. The project ran from April to September 2017 and more details are avaiable here; a short video was produced to encapsulate some of our work, including a workshop designed to test a number of noise reduction strategies in a simulated hospital environment.
"Radio Not" is a short (1000 words) text that functions as the introduction to Alana Pagnutti's Reception: The Radio-Works of Robert Rauschenberg and John Cage.
The introduction takes a broad account of the kinds of practices John Cage adopted in his engagements with radio (whether as medium, as device or as critical problematic to be approached in the same way a Palaeolithic person might depict a mammoth on a cave wall to ward off its evil). Cage's more conventional radio works are related to the programmes he produced for a local station as a teenager; several works by and on Cage are addressed as are Marshall McLuhan and Jean Baudrillard (rarely referenced with respect to Cage).
The introduction deploys a number of textual strategies to govern its production. These strategies are not revealed to the reader. Some relate to 'constraints' on writing that Cage himself used - such as mesostics - others function differently, controlling, for example, the number of words in a paragraph, the number of letters in each word in a paragraph, the sequence of words of different lengths.
In her endorsement of the book, the executive director of the John Cage Trust (and editor of "Selected Letters of John Cage") described my text as "a gift" and, elsewhere, the John Cage trust called the text "beautiful".
The book was launched at London's Cafe Oto on July 10th, 2017, where alongside the UK premiere of John Cage's "Water Walk" (1959), I gave a talk.
Mark Peter Wright and I contributed to this event at the Wellcome Trust that was curated by poet, film programmer and geographer Amy Cutler. The event was part of a weekend at the museum devoted to "Remaking Nature". Our performed lecture navigated the themes of Foley, decoys, agency, non-human rights and camouflage, deploying sound, spoken word and costume. As the names on the poster above promise there were some excellent contributions across the long afternoon.