News

Sound Artists: Brandon Labelle and Finnbogi Petursson

June 29 2010 — by Satu Streatfield
Inspiration
Sound artist Brandon Labelle gave an interesting lecture at Somerset House last month. Apart from subjecting his audience to The Bee Gees' 'Night Fever' in its torturous entirety (twice!), he showed some very cool sound projects.

Icelandic artist Finnbogi Petursson creates beautifully hypnotic sound + light installations, using different frequencies of sound to project rippling patterns of water.

Check out his website and videos:
Finnbogi Petursson's website
Circle 1991, Finnbogi Petursson
Sphere 2003, Finnbogi Petursson
Finnbogi Petursson's Sphere 2006 - Prefix, Toronto Canada
Finnbogi Petursson's Sphere 2006 - Prefix, Toronto Canada
Finnbogi Petursson's Sphere 2003, photo by Kjartan Pierre Emilsson
Finnbogi Petursson's Sphere 2003, photo by Kjartan Pierre Emilsson
Finnbogi Petursson's Circle 1991 The Reykjavik Energy 2005
Finnbogi Petursson's Circle 1991 The Reykjavik Energy 2005
In case you were wondering where/how The Bee Gees came into all of this (and to be honest I'm still kind of wondering that myself)...

Labelle likes to think of sound as the 'night fever' on architecture. To quote from his recent book (and he could just as well be talking about light here):

"...I've been led to recognize the complexity surrounding sound and listening in deeper ways. The seemingly innocent trajectory of sound as it moves from its source and toward a listener, without forgetting all the surfaces, bodies, and other sounds it brushes against, is a story imparting a great deal of information fully charged with geographic, social, psychological, and emotional energy. My feeling is that an entire history and culture can be found within a single sound; from its source to its destination sound is generative of a diverse range of experiences, as well as remaining specifically tied to a given context, as a deeper expressive and prolonged figure of culture (...) It locates us within an extremely animate and energetic environment that often exceeds the conventional parameters and possibilities of representation."

'Acoustic Territories/Sound Culture and Everyday Life', Brandon Labelle (Continuum, 2010)


Other interesting sound artists Labelle refered to:

Toshiya Tsunoda - renders 'silent' objects such as pipes and chambers audible through piezo-ceramic sensors. And very nice they sound too.

Berhard Leitner - influential sound artist and architect since the late 60s. Check out his 'Sound Suit', which plays on the principle that different parts of the body 'hear' sound in different ways.

Christina Kubisch - sound artist since the late 70s who uses electromagnetic induction to create interactive art. Her installations provide unique and personal sonic spaces for listeners who move through them wearing special wireless headphones with magnetic coils. She's also incorporated light into her work since '86.

Carrie Bodle - did an interesting looking project in Cambridge in which she clad a facade with a grid of speakers - like sound's answer to the LED media facade.


And some more good vibrations...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s9GBf8y0lY0&feature=related