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Found Concerto: Berlin Wedding, an Audio Visual Performance

Found Concerto: Berlin Wedding
Audiovisual performance by Peter Kirn and Jemma Woolmore (Jem the Misfit)

Performed at the vernissage of ‘Illuminations of Wedding’ at Supermarkt, Berlin

Relating the disembodiment of sonic sense in our digitally-saturated world, architect/acoustician Cláudia Martinho imagines an aural architecture of experience, one that grows from listening. [1] In the journal she edits, “Site of Sound,” researchers in sociality and sound Brandon LaBelle and Jacob Kreutzfeld constructed a sonic map made by residents of Copenhagen that combined “intimate” sounds with the external, often producing a disharmonious but familiar collage. [2]

Our audiovisual portrait of Wedding deconstructs and reconstructs the experience of Wedding’s soundscape, inspired by our own sensations of memory and impression. Wedding is perhaps the best neighborhood in which to find the resonance of Berlin’s state of constant change, the neighborhood echoing on the streets with the greatest incoming immigration, simultaneously crossed by the footsteps of us ex-pats trudging to Ausländerbehörde and the path of flights to and from Tegel overhead. Working with our own sounds and images, *Found Concerto* is composed from fish smoking in Leopoldplatz, the chatter of Arabic above a humming coffee shop, a mother shouting a child on Müllerstraße, snow crunching as birds sing in chorus in Schillerpark, cries of agony and triumph in a bowling alley. Sights and sounds shift from color and texture into figurative form.

Ilan Katin, an American digital visual artist transplanted to Berlin, told us about a mysterious sound he hears faintly in his flat, like the octave of a wood pipe organ. And so we took from this starting point the idea of ghosts of melodies, finding tones in the whine of U-Bahns and buses, church bells, roasting beans, jet planes, and the groaning winter winds.  Some of these selections are necessarily arbitrary, personal, biased – but they’re also ours, things we heard. Once we started listening, almost any moment might start to sound like a concerto.

We incorporate (and will share) sounds recording by three volunteer contributors from the community, who added their own field sound recordings to our video and sound:
Maia Beyrouti
Blake Shaw
Iwan Gabovitch

PETER KIRN, Berlin 22 January 2013

[1] Cláudia Martinho, “Relational Architecture Through Listening,” Site of Sound: Of Architecture and the Ear 2 (2011): xi-xiii.
[2] Jacob Kreutzfeldt, “Copenhagen Sonic Experience Map,” ibid.: 67-79.

One Response to “Found Concerto: Berlin Wedding, an Audio Visual Performance”

  1. […] You can see video documentation from the performance here. […]

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