With the aid of a coil pickup microphone it is possible to hear what seems to be an entire orchestra residing inside electrical appliances, each object emitting tones and pulses in contrasting frequencies and time signatures.
At first listen you might only hear dystopian chaos however a careful ear will begin to pick out the layers of sound which constitute the whole. Identifying the auditory structures of the inanimate objects that surround us is a rewarding process, the concentrated listening that is involved in the process connecting us to place in a unique way.
This particular recording is of a computer modem. Here the coil pickup microphone reveals the complexity of the digital signals that pass through our modern day offices as we sit dreaming of the weekend.
The work of Alexi Keywan can be identified through her etched silhouettes of quotidian urban scenes. This is shown to a powerful effect in her Ascension series with towers rising above the horizon dominating the landscape. Pinholes mark the paper, almost signifying the perimeter of the towers’ sonic territory.
For Ascension II I wanted to adjust the viewer’s sense of spatial perspective by using recordings of electrical activity that would draw attention down upon the township overseen by the tower. Here sound acts to divert the focus away from the main image to details that might otherwise have been overlooked at a cursory glance.
The entire Auditory Visions collection is now online. Please follow the link to view the works. If you are in the local area please drop in to the Lismore Regional Gallery, NSW before October 24th.