Re: [-empyre-] psychogeographies
> As I wrote this last paragraph last week I was thinking especially of
> the "battlefield weather reports" on CNN which have used
> sophisticated satellite imagery to create almost video game-like
> graphics of "cold fronts moving in from the north," etc.. It strikes
> me as a particularly insidious use of "neutral" data to present very
> biased, if not propagandistic, representations of the war. Perhaps
> this might serve as a starting point for our discussion - if not, I
> would certainly appreciate triangulation on this observation off line
> or in any other format!
If I cut my finger while cooking my nervous system sends an urgent message
to my mind; remove the finger from danger. Chemical messages begin the
process of defense and healing. With the war in cyberspace/realspace the
message doesn't quite get through, there is no healing and no defense.
It would be nice if it rained blood in Washington every time a bomb
exploded amongst the homes of Iraqi civilians.
There is no feedback when the message is censored, when you don't see the
mother watching the heads being blown off her daughters by American gunfire.
The body of America remains ill while its nervous system, its organs, its
heart are prevented from functioning properly. It's like a beast moving
forward blindly. Or is it blind?
If you read some of the material on the PNAC site,
http://www.newamericancentury.org/ particularly the article 'REBUILDING
AMERICA¹S DEFENSES' you see a beast emerging from the darkness after
centuries of gestation, some kind of idealogical Leviathon. The amazing
thing is that this is declared on the web for all to see. Here are to be
found the instructions for ideological dominance, for a way of life built
behind the hard shell of militarism.
If you know where to look you can see the war in all its horror, but you
need the will to see, so many don't have that will to see and only accept
what is given to them pre-digested and packaged to fit their comfortable one
dimensional ideologies. A kind of life lived in a long corridor lined with
TVs with birth at one end and death at the other and everything so painless
and effortless and flavoured with morphine and coca-cola.
> My current research explores sonic and acoustic
> constructions of space, spatialized narrative, human movement and
> psycho-social geography. Much of this work involves the mapping of
> sound to space where invisible sonic overlays are made to correspond
> to a particular geographic region: for example, a portion of the
> Canadian Rockies in "Trace," or the city of Baltimore, Maryland in
> "Invisible Cities | Sounding Baltimore". Almost all of my works are
> large-scale outdoor interactive installations that utilize GPS
> technology and cellular networks in combination with digital
> interactive sound and/or custom web-based real-time imaging software.
> Installations are accessed and/or generated by the movement of
> visitor-participants who travel through these environments with
> custom built GPS-enabled wireless devices.
I am impressed by your environmental work TRACE Teri, the subtlety of the
soundworks in the Burgess Shale fossil beds in Yoho National Park. What a
pleasure and heartfelt experience it would be to walk there and hear these
things, this sonic landscape. To be able to empty the mind and walk and
Listening ... I had a long conversation with a local composer, Amanda
Handel, http://www.amcoz.com.au/comp/h/ahand.htm about listening, bringing
full awareness to sound in all its subtlety. And in the book 'Give My
Regards to Eighth Street' Morton Feldman also brings ones attention to the
act of listening, to the subtleness of individual instruments, performances
The wind, water, shale, sky and your soundworks must make for a rich
PS. Teri, I notice that you have some music references at the foot of your
webpage for TRACES, Brahms, Mahler etc. Have you heard Fratres and Tabula
Rasa by Arvo Pärt? The sleevenotes for the recording I have read;
Somewhere on the Southern edge of the Midwest States lies an endless expanse
of rolling desert shimmering in the heat haze, with nothing to see for miles
all around and with the silence broken only by the sound of a car radio
playing what seems to be the music of the spheres. Such calm and beautiful
music might almost have been written for this desert landscape. "I was
driving through the desert in Utah. Tabula Rasa was being played on the
radio. Suddenly I sensed a connection between the music and the lonliness of
the landscape, the music is somehow very religeous and basic." This is how
Gil Shahan describes his first encounter with the Estonian composer Arvo
Pärt etc etc. The recording I have features Gil Shahan and Adele Anthony,
superb. DG 457-647-2
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