The exhibition will show works by Tristan Beutter, Lars Floris, Alec Gordon, Kim Ho, Siavash Jafari, Tornike Karchkhadze, Jerzy Klimczak, Farzaneh Nouri, Atte Olsonen and Ran Perry.
The title “Voor Ogen en Oren” refers to a pioneering exhibition “Für Augen und Ohren” or “Écouter par les yeux” from 1980. It brought together a spectrum of work from musicians, composers, inventors, conceptual artists where sound and image were equal partners. The idea of ‘sound art’ did not exist 40 years ago, but for artists these days addressing all the senses is now normal practice.
This group of Sonology students have spent the last year investigating the connections and boundaries between the senses and asking questions like: What happens when you compose for visual vibrations? How does listening work underwater? How can we interact with digital life-forms? Can a computer dream about the city? How can you compose with time in an exhibition context?
Image: Knud Peter Petersen (detail of cover from catalogue Für Augen und Ohren).
A laptop ensemble of four Sonology and ArtScience students will perform during the streaming festival REVEIL 2021 on Saturday 1 May2021
The ensemble will elaborate live audio inputs streamed from Locus Sonus soundmap, a webmap providing a network of open microphones capturing audio from different locations spread around the globe, streaming 24/7. Live audio streams are the source material. They are passed by each of the four performers through their own sonic toolbox. Through this process the sounds of the earth are boiled up, reduced and reshaped as music.
Livestream Band: Max Baraitser Smith Andrejs Poikāns Giulia Francavilla Martin Hurych
Moving downstairs is a bimonthly programme that focuses on concerts, auditory performances and experiments, immersive sound pieces and collective experiences. Depending on the setting, the audience might be seated, standing, dancing, behind a screen, or specifically placed inside the basement of The Grey Space in the Middle.
Programme: Yon Eta, Rae and Mint Park will each perform their personal auditory perspective on the ever-moving construct of time, streamed live from the basement of The Grey Space in the Middle. Pay as you like and join the livestream on Mixcloud on Saturday 24 April 2021, 20:30–22:00.
On Sunday 25 April 2021, 23:30, François Bonnet’s radio programme L’Expérimentale presents a documentary by Alexandre Bazin about the Institute of Sonology on France Musique. Kees Tazelaar is interviewed by Alexandre Bazin. The programme will include music by Henk Badings, Gottfried Michael Koenig, Tom Dissevelt, Dick Raaijmakers, Jaap Vink, Ji Youn Kang, Gabriel Paiuk, Marie Guilleray, Richard Barrett, Bjarni Gunnarsson and Kees Tazelaar.
We are fortunate enough to have the results of Raviv Ganchrow’s annual Aural Tectonics workshop broadcast on 18 international radio stations on-air and online. The programme will premiere this coming weekend, Sunday 18 April 2021 on Resonance FM in London at 23:00 (00:00 CET). Show broadcast listing can be found here: https://frameworkradio.net/broadcasts/.
On 23 March there was a Sonology concert in the Arnold Schönbergzaal dedicated to Gabriel Paiuk’s The Construction of an Imaginary Acoustic Space, a composition for ensemble and electronics performed by New European Ensemble. The performance was followed by a lecture, after which the work was performed for a second time. The lecture was about the PhD research on this topic that Gabriel Paiuk is conducting for ACPA. Gabriel tells us about his research, his composition and the performance by New European Ensemble. The performance was recorded and will be published at a later time.
“My PhD research is mainly concerned with how the ways in which we listen are not fixed, but rather mutable. It explores how listening is an activity informed by diverse conditions. More specifically, it delves into how listening is influenced by the technologies we use. This entails a focus, not only on how technologies allow us to produce sounds differently, but on how they affect the ways in which we listen. In this case I’m understanding technology in a wide sense, thus: technology is as much the latest-generation machine-learning algorithm as a violin bow.
I’m fascinated with the material/sensorial (almost tactile) experience of sound. My PhD research both explores theoretical concepts that allow us to think how listening takes place and also produces artistic works that experiment with how these sensorial experiences of sound are modulated. My work takes the form of sound installations as well as works for instruments and electronics. I’m currently in the last year of my PhD trajectory, which means that I’m looking forward to finishing my dissertation by the end of 2021.”
Research and Artistic Creation “I’ve always considered research as a fundamental part of my work, since I believe it is inherent in any inquisitive approach towards artistic creation. Being involved with research means understanding artistic creation as fundamentally entwined in a living, social and material context which exceeds the fields of artistic practice and one’s own singular experience. A research perspective enables an investigation into how the notions, tools, ways of knowing and ways of relating to each other intrinsic to our art-making practices are informed and have implications on multiple domains: historical, geographical, material, technical, even geological, among others. Research implies understanding every art-production as embedded in a complex network rather than as the product of an isolated mind.”
The Construction of an Imaginary Acoustic Space “The Construction of an Imaginary Acoustic Space, the work which was performed for the first time in the Netherlands on Tuesday 23 March 2021, was commissioned by the Österreichisches Ensemble für Neue Musik in 2018 and premiered in Salzburg in 2019. The work explores how the diverse ways in which sound is materially produced play a role in the ways we engage with it.
The work is based on the familiar presence of the sound of string ensembles across a wide array of auditory and cultural contexts, from the concert hall to pop music to the realm of audiovisual spectacles. Interestingly, it is probable that a great majority of people have heard the sound of string ensembles mediated through a myriad kind of recordings and technological devices, rather than in a live context. The way these string ensembles are experienced in their mediated forms is shaped by the acoustic and material qualities of the processes of recording and sound reproduction. The sensorial and affective traces that these processes create is at the basis of the work.
The Construction of an Imaginary Acoustic Space superimposes the sound of a live salon string ensemble with diversely mediated versions of the ubiquitous sound of string ensembles and investigates the acoustic and material imprint of these mediations. This is produced by superimposing different technologies, where one of the ensemble members operates a tape recorder on stage and a four-channel digital soundtrack explores the acoustic qualities of the Arnold Schönbergzaal.”
Performance on 23 March “I’ve been in touch with the New European Ensemble since a bit more than a year ago about the possibility of performing this work at some point. Evidently, the conditions prompted since a year ago by the pandemic made plans to present it much more difficult. Fortunately, the opportunity came up of presenting it within the Sonology Discussion Concert that happened on Tuesday, and it was made possible thanks to the generous contribution of Stichting De Zaaier.
The work was performed to an audience of 30 students and staff members from the school and a recording was made. Although the work emphasises the irreplaceable nature of the embodied acoustic experience which occurs in the concert hall – and thus it is essentially non-reproducible – we embarked on a sophisticated recording plan, in collaboration with the Art of Sound Department, that resulted in a document of the acoustic experience of the concert in the best possible way.”
Slowly rising from hibernation, The Hague’s Grey Space in the Middle is collaborating with sound artist Hilde Wollenstein for this first online edition of Moving Downstairs.
Moving Downstairs is a bimonthly programme that focuses on concerts, auditory performances and experiments, immersive sound pieces and collective experiences. Depending on the setting, the audience might be seated, standing, dancing, behind a screen, or specifically placed inside the basement of The Grey Space.
With the intention to explore a particular, individual sense of sound within a clear, collective structure, Hilde has written a score for eight performers, following a continuous dream narrative.
Richard Barrett: ‘To me, music is a way of understanding the world’
28 January 2021. Text: Myrthe Timmers.
A new chair has been added to the partnership between Leiden University and the Royal Conservatoire The Hague. Richard Barrett has been appointed Professor of Research in Creative Music (ACPA) as of 1 December 2020. ‘For me it is important that music and academia are not placed in an ivory tower.’
Barrett’s career is atypical for someone at the humanities. After studying Genetics and Microbiology, he made the switch to music at the age of 20. He became a composer and performing musician, but did not forget about science. ‘When I write about music, I always do so with scientific precision. It helps me to think in details.’
A long track record
This approach is useful to him at the Royal Conservatoire, where he has a long track record as a teacher at the Institute of Sonology. According to him, his new appointment ensures that he and his students can develop themselves further. ‘At the conservatoire, I sometimes mentor people who, after their two-year master’s, feel that their research has only just begun. As a professor, I can start building a community, giving them the opportunity to develop themselves further and to add more depth to their subject.’
Community and collaboration
The word ‘community’ comes up more often during the conversation. According to Barrett, music and academia are disciplines that are preferably practiced together. ‘The past year I have been researching improvisation in various disciplines, from dance to technology. I translated the results into music. The coming year I want to test these ideas with a group of improvising musicians from the conservatoire. This way we can arrive at new insights together.’
Academia as a bridge
The exchange between music and academia is useful to a position that includes the goal of strengthening the collaboration between the university and the conservatoire, but for Barrett it is more than a mandatory part of his job. Barrett: ‘To me, music is a way of understanding the world, but this is probably an unfamiliar idea to a lot of people. One of the reasons for “research in creative music” is to find ways to express and explain things like this to a wider audience, so I see the university as a platform from which to build bridges between the music and the public.’
The Academy of Creative and Performing Arts (ACPA) provides artistic research and education in the arts. ACPA is a research institute of the Faculty of Humanities and part of a partnership between the University of the Arts The Hague and Leiden University. This ensures, among other things, that students can combine an academic study with art courses at a university of applied sciences.
All those who are interested in the Audio Communication & Sonology double degree master’s programme are invited to attend an information session on 2 February 2021 at 3 pm. The meeting will take place via Zoom.
Kees Tazelaar and Richard Barrett (Institute of Sonology, Royal Conservatoire, The Hague) and Stefan Weinzierl (TU Berlin) will be available to answer questions about the content and administration of the programme.