Sonic memories as embodiments of technological infrastructure

'Collective Womb' By Ximena Alarcón

‘Collective Womb’ By Ximena Alarcón

Commemorating 150 years of the construction of the London Underground, the Centre for Metropolitan History (IHR), in association with the London Transport Museum organised the conference ‘Going Underground – travel beneath the metropolis 1863-2013’. Here perspectives from artists, architects, historians, engineers, and commuters were brought together to reflect on the past, present and future of this iconic urban infrastructure.

Here you can listen to the podcast of the paper I presented in the conference on the 17th of January, 2013:

Listening and sounding in the London Underground: sonic memories as embodiments of technological Infrastructure

Here you can listen to all the papers presented at the conference:

https://historyspot.org.uk/podcasts/going-underground-travel-beneath-metropolis-1863-2013

Many thanks to the organisers for bringing together all the people who have been fascinated with the underground environment.


Internet Auditoriums – Locus Sonus

(En español abajo)

Sounding Underground  was presented last weekend in the Internet Auditoriums Symposium, along with Networked Migrations. The spaces that these two projects create can be understood as Internet Auditoriums. Here the abstract of the paper. In the symposium we were listening to Interconnected Auditoriums which create a space for collective listening, using the Internet or not, with and without wires; listening collectively to the body (in hammocks), listening to the cloud, listening to real-fiction in Berlin, listening to twitterscapes, listening to the dreams, listening to all abilities, listening to Brazil, listening to sounds of childhood, listening to the tiny movements of the Big Ben, to Venice, and to the musicality of the languages that is extracted from the non-sense. We also listened to the strike and the protest in Nantes against the construction of the Airport. Interconnected listening makes the nature of sounds migratory, do we travel with them?. Rich, ethereal, complex, fragile, metaphoric, poetic and politic auditoriums. A delicious time of learning in Nantes! Many thanks to Locus Sonus team and to all the participants! and to the city of the giant Elephant!

Networked Migrations fue presentado el fin de semana pasado en el Symposium Internet Auditoriums, con Sounding Underground. Los espacios que estos dos proyectos crean pueden ser entendidos como Internet Auditoriums. Aqui esta el abstract de la presentación. En el Symposium escuchamos Auditorios Interconectados, los cuales crean espacio para la escucha colectiva, usando o no el Internet, con y sin cables; escuchando colectivamente al cuerpo (en hamacas), escuchando a la ‘cloud’, escuchando a ficción-realidad en Berlin y a twitterscapes, escuchando a los sueños, a todas las habilidades, escuchando a Brasil, y a los sonidos de la niñez; también a los sonidos imperceptibles del Big Ben, a Venezia, y a la musicalidad de los idiomas que se extrae del sin sentido. Escuchamos también a Nantes en huelga, en protesta por la construcción del aeropuerto. Escucha interconectada hace que la naturaleza de los sonidos se vuelva migratoria, viajamos con ellos?. Ricos, etéreos, complejos, frágiles, metafóricos, poéticos y políticos; así son estos auditorios.  Un tiempo delicioso de aprendizaje en Nantes! Muchas gracias, merçi! al equipo de Locus Sonus y a todos los participantes! y a la ciudad del elefante gigante!


Mexico and New Orleans – Listening practice & Cross-disciplines

I had the great experience of giving a talk in the festival Visiones Sonoras organised by the CMMAS in Morelia – México. Sounding Underground makes connections between people and their current or lost acoustic environments. Interesting questions about its performative function, and the possibilities of the networks are still in my mind. I enjoyed the emphasis placed on the instruments and objects in all the pieces of the Electroacoustic Concert 5 , it connects me more with the performance.
IV Encuentro Iberoamericano de Paisaje Sonoro
One day later, I presented a paper about Sounding Underground in the IV Encuentro Iberoamericano de Paisaje Sonoro organised by the Fonoteca Nacional in Mexico City. A very diverse and interesting cross-disciplinary and cross-arts reflection about “Paisaje Sonoro” (Soundscape). Excellent speakers and attendants, a learning experience about listening and creating: Whales, Flamencos, Veracruz, San Juan Potosí, Islas Resonantes, Bells (Chile and Mexico), Cartography Mobile experiences, Water, an Electroacoustic concert in 10.0 and lessons about Silence.

Last but not least, I attended to the American Anthropological Association AAA Conference in New Orleans, as speaker in the Session: “Perception, production and circulation: Sensory Ethnography through media” organised by Julia Yezbick and Aryo Danusiri from Harvard University. Sensory Ethnography is a new field where Sounding Underground experience fits very well, and gets nourishment from Anthropology.

Thanks to all the organisers and great people that I met through all these three wonderful events.


IBM social software unconference

Organised by Andrew Sempere. Thanks!

My three words… listening, underground, migration… I think.

Session Identity, territory and social migration (Ximena + Edith)

and my tweet:

“Democracies should be undemocracies”

Keynote speaker: Amanda Palmer!!

Great people, talks and conversations.

Hoping to follow and maintain links!


Royal Geographical Society – Sonic Methods

“Sounding Underground: Listening, performing and transforming” was the paper given in the Annual International Conference of the Royal Geographical Society in London. The Session “Sonic Methods” organised by Michael Gallagher and Jonathan Prior, was a rich environment to share different methods that study our acoustic experiences and their cultural and artistic value. At the end of the day we had a one minute recording experiment with loop tapes. A real challenge!

The Theme of the conference was sustainability, and perhaps this last exercise proposed by Michael Gallagher, is a representation of old media and its degradation, the qualities of degradation and a technology that records just one minute making of it ephemeral in the recording but rich in the experience. If you just have one minute in a tape to record, what would you record?

This experience is so refreshing in this digital world where “memory” is a commodity, as regards machines, and our own “memory” can get lost in a (too much) over information. The importance of reflect, and listen to each moment as if it was the last minute available to listen…


Sound Ecologies: Listening in the City

I’ll give a talk about “Sounding Underground” in the following event:

SOUND ECOLOGIES: LISTENING IN THE CITY

10am-4pm, Wednesday 18th November 2009
Department of Music, City University London, Northampton Square,
London EC1V 0HB

A day of presentations, participatory workshops and informal performance
around themes of urban sound, networked sound, locative media and
acoustic ecology – the relationship between living beings and their
environment, as mediated by sound. Featuring Furtherfield (Ruth Catlow
and Marc Garrett), and guest speakers Stanza, Peter Cusack, Ximena
Alarcón and Pedro Rebelo.

The event is free, and open to anyone interested, including musicians,
artists, curators, technologists; ecologically inclined thinkers, makers
and doers of all kinds.

For further information please visit
http://furtherfield.org/soundecologies.php

NB: BOOKING IS ESSENTIAL
Space is limited. To reserve your place at Sound Ecologies please visit
http://www.city.ac.uk/whatson/forms-2009/181109-sound-ecologies

SOUND ECOLOGIES: LISTENING IN THE CITY is a partnership event funded by
LCACE

convened by Katharine Norman, Department of Music, City University
London and Furtherfield.org