Myths of Electromagnetism
Binaural sound recording – please listen with good headphones: Excerpts from presentation at the Spatial Sound Institute, Budapest, dec. 1st 2018.
During their residency at Spatial Sound Institute in the fall 2018, Camille Roth and Rebekka Bohse Meyer collaborated to develop Myths of Electromagnetism, a spatial sound installation for the 4DSound system, consisting of 42 omnidirectional speakers spread across the space. The project explores electromagnetic radiation, the ubiquitous invisible data and signals in the space around us, and the ways that we as humans relate to these phenomena.
Electromagnetic radiation surrounds us everywhere in our modern urban environment. An escalating number of Wi-Fi hotspots are transmitting radio waves filled with digital information, that can be accessed from everywhere with the right equipment (technology and encryption keys). What looks like empty space between buildings, above streets, around trees and inside our houses, is actually filled with digital information and communication processes. But how do we understand this invisible medium that flows through the air and shapes our society?
This installation presents a sonic interpretation of how these phenomena manifest themselves in the space around us – how they move, behave and affect us. Inspired by how societies have imagined electricity and electromagnetism throughout history, the work deals with representation as well as the myths and the notions on such phenomenon. From imagining electromagnetism as something dangerous and supernatural, to acknowledging it, as well as heavily relying on it’s importance for transmitting communication, information and data, it is still a phenomenon that triggers discussion in terms of how it affect us and our bodies, as the density of waves becomes more and more concentrated.
The composition is primarily created using sound recordings of high-frequency electromagnetic waves in urban environments, and lower-frequency waves from phones and computers – captured by a detector that transduces the different electromagnetic wavelengths into sound waves.
The installation consists of two parts, of which the first is a sonic staging of the air as charged with electromagnetic particles, that surround and move through the listeners body, increasing and decreasing in density. The second part focuses on the locality of transmissions and de-modulation of signals, as we follow movements through space, intertwined with bursts of mythical imaginations of the nature of these invisible forces.
The piece was presented in loop of 18 min. repeated over 2 hours, twice during the afternoon, as part of the event Inaudible Realities at Spatial Sound Institute December the 1st, 2018.
The residency project Myths of Electromagnetism is supported by the Danish Arts Foundation and 4DSound.
Respiration is a site-specific sound installation in Atelier Hotel Pro Forma, created around the idea of an organic membrane. The sound is coming from big stereo speakers behind two layers of semi-transparent fabric, creating a sense of depth, without enabling the audience to see what is behind. The intention with the installation is to provide a sensuous experience of living organic matter – a membrane in human scale, that breathes, by alternating between two types of sound texture: the deep sweltering rumbling, and the sharp and crisp crackling.
In the installation, the two types of sound texture alternate in 90 seconds intervals, a timescale that allows for the audience to move around and relate to the membrane from various distances.
Respiration took place at Atelier Hotel Pro Forma Lounge the 4th of November 2016. Original length 22 min. loop
Untitled (sound of Literaturhaus)
This site-specific sound installation was developed specifically for the first version of HAUS-Festival – a one-day celebration of the cultural venue Literaturhaus in Copenhagen. The sound installation for Literaturhaus is an exploration of the physical materials of the old church building, and their way of shaping the possible sounds, movements and experiences that unfold in the place.
The sounds are created from field-recordings made within the venue. They alter between performative passages of recorded footsteps, humming-voices and other movements inside the building, and then manipulated passages that explore these sounds and their textual, acoustic and musical qualities in interplay with the space itself. The sound emits from big stereo speakers in each side of the balcony, and can be heard in the entire building, depending on the level of other live activities.
The sound installation for Literaturhaus took place on September 24th, 20016. Original length: 23 min. sound loop.
Hvælving is a site-specific sound installation, developed as a part of Camille Roth’s master thesis project: Auditory staging of environmental experience – an aesthetic intervention in the vertical urban space.
The Hvælving sound installation is an investigation of the auditory urban environment as experienced from the rooftops of Copenhagen. It consists of field-recordings from the original site, edited and manipulated and played back in the same site, to enhance certain aspects of the spatial-auditory surroundings. By focusing on four selected acoustic phenomenon – voices blowing in the air, signals from the ubiquitous wifi-data, the airplane-drones from above and the street-echo from below – the installation invites the listener to relate to the vertical urban surroundings in new ways.
Hvælving took place on Østergro Tagfarm in Copenhagen from September 25th – 27th 2015. Original length: 14 min. sound loop.