Cracks in the City
Crack in the City is a project dedicated to creating sound installations/actions reflecting on public space. Urban everyday life induces and is surrounded by a multitude of different sounds, yet most of it we do not continuously acknowledge, it is tuned out and escapes consciousness. The project’s aim is to bring an experiential artistic reflection to our auditory everyday life in order to expand our understanding of public space itself and its sounds, with aesthetic qualities.
The project’s theme is inspired by the Japanese pottery mending method Kintsugi (golden joinery). Rather than using invisible glues, done so in the West, cracks and sherds are joined and restored with gold-filled lacquer to accentuate the gaps. Japanese aesthetics consider the value of pottery mended with this method to be higher than the original one, adding experienced history as well as a more interesting and beautiful landscape “Keshiki” (“scenery; scene; landscape” in Japanese) to the piece. This word is specifically used to describe the appreciated surface qualities of a piece of clay ware.
The Crack in the City, Aberdeen workshop transposes this concept of gain through object history to urban surroundings. A crack can be understood as a literal crack of a street or building, or a personal, historical or social disruption etc.. To explore the aesthetic means of repair we will attempt to conceptually restore or highlight the found gaps with sound, adding value to the urban landscape and hereby create a soundscape through the number of works altogether.
This 2 day workshop will give participants the opportunity to define, find, comment on and 'repair' an urban crack of their choice, resulting in a performance or installation. The method of 'mending' is free to choose and the sounds used can be anything from computer generated to physically produced. If the weather allows for it we will install the pieces as public intervention in (in)appropriate places.
Day 1: We will start off with a short introduction to the concept and theoretical background, then a time for fieldwork to consciously experience the city of Aberdeen and finding points of personal interest, completed with a feedback and discussion round. Then the participants are free to develop and realise ideas and concepts alone or in groups. Because of the limited timespan available participants are encouraged to incorporate materials, methods and skills they are already comfortable with. Indoor loudspeakers are provided, all other tools and materials, especially computer and sounding objects should be brought along by the participants.
Day 2: The second day will give participants the chance to finish their pieces and present their works to the public. This exhibition is free and open to the public.
What participants need for the workshop
The participants will be required to bring:
- a laptop
- any sounding objects of their own
- any materials they would like use for their intervention projects
- their expertise in practical sense, like good at Max/Supercollider/Processing or any programming environments or instruments or sort that they are comfortable using for an immediate reaction.