Sounding Underground in Riders on the Train

riders on the train exhibition
The second and third rewarding presentations for “Sounding Underground” took place in Boston, MA, within the “Riders on the Train” exhibition curated by Nance Davies in Axiom Gallery. The Axiom Gallery is situated right on top of the Green St. station of the Bostonian metro “T” . The rumbling of the trains are heard and felt every five or ten minutes depending on the hour of the day. Cell phone pictures are the welcoming view from outside on the wall of the exhibition, divided by a video of meeting trains, go and return, created by Nance Davies. Interactive, audiovisual, video, photographic, graphic, text, and sound works bring the powerful experience of underground transport systems in one place, as perceived from artists from all over the world. On the 20th of November, I had the pleasure to participate of an artists’ talk where we had the chance to share our creation processes with the community. Personal motivations meet the political, social and symbolic contexts of these underground environments. This is a very rich and sensual exhibition that, if you have the good luck of being in Boston, and if you are or have been a commuter in public transportation… you must go!

Earlier in the day, I attended to the Studio for Interrelated Media at MASSart college to deliver a talk to students of Sound Art and Technology. I had a very enjoyable time listening to students talk about Boston’s commuting experiences, motivated by my talk about Sounding Underground and the experiences of London, Mexico DF and Paris commuters. The experience of listening to their commuting in Boston starts… and in a future it hopefully will be linked and accessed via Sounding Underground!

Thanks to Nance Davies for this amazing opportunity.


Sounding Underground in Sound Ecologies

The first weeks of on-line life of “Sounding Underground” have been rewarding. I have had the opportunity to share the experience of its creation in three venues. The first one: Sound Ecologies: Listening to the City, event organised by Katharine Norman from the City University in London, and the independent artistic organisation Furtherfield. Sharing with other speakers, and attendants to the event was nourishing and positioned this experience as a networked experience that owes its value to the ethnographic and detail process behind it. Although the virtual Environment Sounding Underground is an important milestone there are many issues that will evolve for the contributors and audiences. It’s vital for the project to strength the networking technological options and strive for the participation of non-performers focusing amongst others, on aspects mentioned by Pedro Rebelo such as networked dramaturgia in improvisation activities on-line and off-line. Thanks to Katharine for organising such an important and enjoyable event! The work continues…

Sound Ecologies: Listening in the City

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


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

Space is limited. To reserve your place at Sound Ecologies please visit

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

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

Visit to VKS – Virtual Knowledge Studio

I just discovered this post by Anne Beaulieu as regards my visit to VKS Virtual Knowledge Studio, in Amsterdam, in November 5th, 2007. I am very grateful for her words, support and invitation and the way that she is perceiving my work. Thanks to all the VKS team for inviting me for a second time to share research findings.

I highlight here some of her words, (but is worth to read the whole post and the comments), which help me to reflect again on my work:

“Personally, I was again quite intrigued by the Ximena’s approach to fieldwork and to her installation (she had presented a small part of her project at the VE workshop last year). Her project to understand and represent experience are not based on brute force (obtaining thousands of sound samples) nor on appeals to authenticity of her observation as the all-knowing fieldworker. Rather, her way of working is highly iterative: gathering material in the company of respondents, talking to them at length, going back to them with the material gathered, reworking it, gathering once again the respondent’s reactions to the transformed material, making it part of her installation. All this work constructs a very rich version of experience that requires a lasting, growing research relationship, and one that draws beautifully on the reflexive potential of respondents. “


I gave a talk about my research on the 11th of March for a Research Group of “Graphic User Interfaces and Computer Mediated Communication” at the Queen Mary, University of London. One question was about synesthesia and how I have involved this fact in my research. My response related the relation sound-smell mentioned by some commuters. One PhD researcher pointed me to explore the tags that people use in the FreeSound Project, as a way of making more dynamic the creation of categories within the ISE. Interesting thought which is nourishing this aspect and another aspects about narratives. Thanks to all researchers who attended, and to Dr. Nick Bryan-Kinns for inviting me.

Auditory Environments

The ISE project was shown in the Symposium “Auditory Environments” organised by Dr. James Mooney from the “Culture Lab” at Newcastle University. A variety of projects and research focused on sound and space, and I found interesting conexions with ideas developed in projects such as iPoi by Dr Jennifer G. Sheridan from, such as the difference between participant and performer in interactive artistic projects that involve audience. Same path with the project presented by Atau Tanaka D20, an Icosahedron, an object that difusse different channels of sound in each side of the object. Recording voice was my suggestion as to complete the interactive process. 0 Comments