Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Sand Point - making the Trace

Me slowly turning round - Russ determinedly striding out!

Amazing sunset over Cardiff ..... strange green light on Exmoor, shimmering edges where land meets sea, on and on into the west.

Monday, 22 June 2009

Living Landscapes

Living Landscapes, AHRC conference at Aberystwyth University last Thurs - Sun was a back to back rich multidisciplinary wonderful pool of interesting experiences.
Lots of sound and space and walking - not much technology. This beautiful collage sent to us as lovely souvenir, with photos by Cara Brostrom, captures some of the magic moments..
Who's in that tree?

finger on the pulse

finger on the pulse
ears open
look up look round
walk the paths
yesterday's horizon with tomorrow's horizon

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Fwd: Living Landscapes - thursday

I tried emailing this from my mobile - but it didn't reach the blog.. so here it is, sorted..
Date: 2009/6/18
Subject: Living Landscapes - thursday

Im at Aberystwyth University for a 4 day, action-packed conference on landscape & environment.
So first thing we learnt how to say welcome in Welsh.. Croeso... And the welsh word for locality, place to which one belongs, locating humanlife in the environment is Cynefin.
George Monbiot gave a moving opening address, with todays climate report an ominous challenge, but stressing the need for us all to engage with climate breakdown as the pervading issue, and using creativity to get peoples prefrontal cortexs waking up from denial, and minds changing.
Then a plenary on 'post-discplinary' exchange, from material science to theatre research and cultural geogaphy.
Next a performance/pesentation/paper from the weeklong body weather residential in snowdonia - bhuto, permeable nature and body/landscape as continuously changing and bringing eachother into being. Nice.
Acoustic landscapes with wildlife sound recordist Chris Watson was great, loved the female cheetah purring. And the amazing mini habitat of flies and vultures inside the carcass of azebra. Freshly killed zebra.
For a bedtime dreaming his 16 min. Installation of 12 hour desert night sounds of the kalahari... I can still 'see' the stars!And inbetween all that was an hour performance of an audio piece for and about the Ancolme valley in lincolnshire. (look s a lot like the somerset levels...)
More tomorrow.... With an early 7am start for performances in the landscape workshop.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Whitesheet Soundlines

Sunday, Strata test walks on the hill...

With wonderful old hawthorn tree.

[This is using a pre-release version of mscape, which I was testing out for e-merge.
It's fine playing Soundlines on the ipaqs but a few teething problems running on the HTC phone - appears to rotate the whole map by 90` which was very confusing!]

Apart from the residency of two very large bulls, one in each of the mapped fields, it was a beautiful day to explore the hill discovering sounds and getting a suntan!

Tuesday evening I went back for a solo experience. I love the overlays of rythms and textured sounds, intensifying with the contours of the land. Moving slowly the sounds and patterns in space start to connect - a feeling of absence when I left the rich sounds of the round barrow. Quickly enchanted by discovering a tiny band of flute, that blows in the wind. The wind catching the headphones - sounds inside or out? Recapturing the flute, staying very still, a shaft opening up in the space of the landscape, if I stay still the melody uncurls, telling a story of time deep and passed. Then I follow a surface line, traversing the hilltop, crisp and sharp, rattley rythm.. has someone walked here before.. As I follow the sound follows the path. A new area beyond the ditched earthworks. And an invisible sound-mirror of the barrow - sound echoing form, creating a new sense of place, relationship and passing. Walking back I see a cow and calf following an unmarked path. Soundlines connect me as I follow them on my own unmarked path. Soundlines reaching out to the paragliders in the air, to the ripples in the grass, perfumed by orchids. Captivating, enhanced.

Friday, 12 June 2009

soundlines thoughtlines

The soundlines walk becomes a different experience depending on the time of day.

Afternoon is business like and you can stride out, cover the ground / sounds with ease.
Late evening turns the user to the sunset clouds, draws the feet to where the view is best. It's easier to linger.
Beyond dusk, coming into dark, you can enjoy an isolation of sound and motion, there's leisure to stop, no distraction. Firefly lights from the PDA making traces through the dusky shadows. Solitary dancers.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Test 2 - for Whitesheet Hill

So here's the second test - lots of different combinations of layering sound to test in the open spaces and ancient landscape of Whitesheet Hill on Sunday with Strata.

This is a screenshot from the mscape software I'm using to map the sounds onto the land.

Should be an interesting walk...

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

First Soundwalk!

Walks in Lower Coleford after dusk...
Elemental rythms, melodies and ambients as first demos of the Soundlines experience. Wonderful! Soft beautiful imagery watching a shadowy figure, lit by PDA, twisting and turning exploring the sound of the place - each figure moves in its own special way, soft round lines, dashing zig zag marks, structured solid blocks.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

A place with few roads

Apparently roads are quite a new concept in this place! (Sheep's Head peninsular, north side) ....
when you find one, you can drive slowly for miles, escorted by swallows, meeting - no-one.
Journeys would have been by boat.

Stone circles tend to be in the lee of the hills. You don't see them till you stumble on them.

The whole peninsular is crossed by hundreds of waymarked footpaths, down old boreens and up mountain tracks. Some tending towards the ficititous. Thrushes and blackbirds sing till nearly midnight leading the way across twilit mountainside down to groves of trees.