Sound Art Festival
SOUNDER and Jean Martin & Wil Pennycook
Sound Art Brighton Festival is a city-wide programme of events presenting sound installations, sound sculptures, interactive sound events, performances, sound walks, audio and audiovisual works, both in galleries and outdoors, throughout the city of Brighton and Hove (UK).
Combining local sound art talents with international guests, the festival celebrates the diversity and range of this broad and hybrid art practice and pays homage to the multitude of sounds to be found in our city – with the Downs on one side and the sea on the other, as part of a UNESCO biosphere.
Brighton CCA’s Atrium Gallery will host two installations, SOUNDER postcards by SOUNDER collective and One Minute Past by Jean Martin and Wil Pennycook. Open Tues – Sat, 12 – 5pm.
There will be a special screening event taking place in the theatre of One Minute Past by Jean Martin and Wil Pennycook to coincide with Third Thursday’s Brighton on Thursday 17 March 2022, 5 – 7pm.
Admission free. For more information about the festival please visit soundartbrighton.com.
SOUNDER Postcards, SOUNDER, 2022
SOUNDER Postcards began as an online exchange of audio snapshots of environmental sounds between Brighton and Bern. For the festival they decided to share these recordings, to give a wider audience an opportunity to dive into different soundscapes and engage their curiosity about nature-sounds and their diversity. The exhibition takes the form of wall-maps with quick response (QR) codes embedded, allowing the public to listen to selected locations by streaming the field recordings directly from their smartphones.
SOUNDER (UK/CH) is an international collaboration exploring the sounds of Bern (CH) and Brighton, (UK). It was founded by artists Esme Wright (UK), Hal Kelly (UK), Flurina Mia Häberli (CH) and Stefano Christen (CH) in 2020, joined by Ehsan Valaei in 2021. Their projects explore the sonic characteristics of Bern and Brighton (two locations recognised as UNESCO biospheres), addressing environmental issues through an inclusive sound art practice. SOUNDER utilises digital technologies to raise awareness of our local sonic environments.
One Minute Past, Jean Martin and Wil Pennycook, 2022
The journey to create One Minute Past began with Lethe, the river of oblivion, at whose source poppies and wild flowers grow. We discovered that Lethe was one of the five rivers of Hades. We found ourselves excavating Greek mythology, Hades and the imagined underworld where we all will go. Using water as a metaphor allowed us to attempt to show what is not imaginable. But what was it that we were moving towards, trying to give shape to?
Our piece is a meditation about the passing of time. It opens with the call of an owl, Athena’s bird; a call to wisdom. We imagined the underworld as dark and cold. Above, in the world we know, the nature of being is coming and going, being born and dying. What is this mysterious phenomenon called time? The essence of being is time – says Heidegger. The opposite of being is nothing. We tried to give the nothing a form by creating an audiovisual atmosphere, where the perception of time slows down.
What is the connection between oblivion, the underworld and how we are inhabiting this earth? The Greek oikos, the root of ecology, means house. The earth is our house, but we seem unable to bear the reality of our behaviour within it, many of us appearing oblivious to the harms we are doing: the individual escape into oblivion and the collective denial of our actions.
“My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains my sense, as though of hemlock I have drunk, or emptied some dull opiate to the drains, one minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk.” John Keats.
One Minute Past is a single screen film (length: 15mins) with a stereo soundtrack.
Jean Martin composes music for moving images, film and performance. He is especially interested in creating atmosphere. He collaborates with a range of creative practitioners including musicians, curators, ecologists and film makers. Wil and Jean have created several works together, notably Hearing Shadows (2019), three (2020), again and again (2021). www.jeanmartin.uk
Wil Pennycook makes analogue and digital non-narrative films as well as taking photographs and writing. She mainly works together with others, preferring to be involved with the dynamics that collaborations bring.