The discussion of sound in urban and public spaces is often reduced to the problems of noise and how it affects mental health.
My focus is the political and a phenomenological approach that includes the body and its voice and senses (where sound is often overlooked): The experience of public and socially produced spaces and the link to political and societal transformations that can be traced back to e.g. the Athens agora.
I will claim that acoustics as part of “peripheral perception” is essential for sensing and navigating (think echolocation) the complex, nonverbal qualities of the urban. Exploring and discovering “Spaces of possibilities” (SOP) – feeling free and able to act – that can motivate political (and societal) transformations.
My work with sounds is still in its infancy but it is based on “street interviews” recorded onsite using binaural microphones to experience an extra strong spatial sound. For the full experience, headphones are necessary.
One first example is a recording from Salo, Finland with Alica, an italian exchange student at the highschool where I worked on developing new learning strategies.
Second example is the result of the a workshop at that academy of performing arts in Berlin: Ohr und Stadt. We worked with exploring/discovering spaces of possibilities and sonic gestures.
Third example is a first test podcast – Around the block – a recording from a neighbourhood in Brussels.