In the framework of Nuits Sonores Brussels, we present the third edition of Tendencies. As always, the connection between art, technology and science is central, and this time the theme is sound art. Christoph de Boeck, Aernoudt Jacobs, Kurt d’Haeseleer, Pascal Broccolichi (FR), Voldemärs Johansons (LV) and another artist, yet to be confirmed, will present their sound installations.
Sound art is the twilight zone in which visual art, sound, music and technology meet. Visible sounds, audible images. In the early 20th century, a number of artists began to treat sound as material. It became the main component in the creation of installations or sculptures. Since then a vibrant international scene has developed. Exhibitions in centres such as the Hayward Gallery (London), the Pompidou Centre (Paris), Macba (Barcelona), ZKM Karlsruhe and Akademie der Künste (Berlin) have confirmed the importance of the genre.
The work of Christoph De Boeck (BE, artistic director of Overtoon) is a clear example of sound art. Floating Beam brings sound to the inaudible activity of metal under stress. The tiny sounds are processed and stacked to form a soundtrack to a piece of rusting metal. Floating Beam was created in collaboration with the Department of Metal and Material Engineering at KU Leuven.
The Induction Series by Aernoudt Jacobs (BE, artistic leader of Overtoon) employs electromagnetic induction to produce sound. Everyday objects such as oil cans work in combination with magnets and coils to generate an electromagnetic field which produces audible vibrations. The listener is placed between them.
Kurt d’Haeseleer (BE, artistic director of Werktank) uses the principle of ‘Pepper’s Ghost’: a theatrical technique which uses reflection to create illusions. In The White, this results in an intense, alienating audiovisual experience, somewhere between fear and ecstasy. Like a child covering its eyes at the sight of something frightening, yet peeking through its fingers to catch a glimpse.
In Audiosphères Pascal Broccolichi (FR) develops high-tech electro-acoustic instruments. These follow on from the ‘acousmonium’ by François Bayle (Groupes de Recherches Musicales, 1974): a complex system of 80 speakers designed to play electronic music. Two spheres, each containing 34 speakers, project Broccolichi’s ‘musique concrète’ into the exhibition space in inimitable fashion.
The exhibition is curated by Joost Fonteyne, who has presented international sound art exhibitions in Courtrai almost once a year since 1999 under the title Klinkende Stad. He is the director of Wilde Westen.