Micro sound diaries from the launch night of Audiograft 2012

Extending the idea of the Audiograft 2011 diary, a documentation workshop will be running throughout Audiograft 2012, exploring issues around documentation and storytelling in sound. Throughout March, this site – Sound Diaries – has become an online sketchpad for sharing the workshop’s explorations of sonic documentation.

Kim Laugs, Toby O’Connor, Christina Bringmann-Smith and Charlotte Heffernan are attending this workshop, which is being co-run by Felicity Ford and Valeria Merlini. Participants are listening to the sounds of Audiograft, exploring how they might be documented, and making many field-recordings.

The workshop is also considering how the soundworlds of the work presented at Audiograft relate to the soundworlds of the contexts and sites involved in the festival – for example the sounds of the campus where the installations are being presented; the acoustics of the buildings where the concerts are being held; and the sonic qualities of the objects used in performances throughout the festival.

This workshop extends the theories and ideas explored during the Framework Radio Documentation & Production workshop led by Ford and Merlini in Tallinn, 2011. One output from this workshop will be a framework radio show; the other will be a series of mini-shorts and miscellaneous audio recordings to be presented here, in keeping with the Sound Diaries mission which is to explore what it means to record life in sound.

This short is comprised of recordings made on Wednesday 29th February, and features the following sounds from the Audiograft programme:

Lee Riley’s guitar installation
plucking the strings of a gutted/broken piano in the Richard Hamilton Building
excerpt of amplified sewing machine from “Towards an Excellent Finish” by Stavroula Kounadea and Felicity Ford
excerpt of “Guitar Drag” by Christian Marclay, performed and adapted by Lee Riley (outside)
doors opening and closing in the Richard Hamilton Building
high heels exciting the acoustics of all the spaces around the Headington Hill Campus
excerpts from inside and outside the Drama Studio, where John Cage’s “Cartridge Music” was being performed by Alfredo Costa Monteiro, Lee Patterson, Robert Curgenven, Patrick Farmer, Ferran Fages, Daniel Jones and Stephen Cornford
the audience applauding inside and outside buildings around the Headington Hill Campus
excerpt of Joseph Cox’s installation, “Selection of prepared Records”
the audience leaving the Drama Studio
a heavy trolley being dragged around the Headington Hill Campus

These sounds were recorded by all the participants in the workshop, and then selected as a shortlist of sounds to represent this night of the festival programme. To demonstrate how the editing process can change the way we perceive sounds, Valeria and Felicity made individual remixes of the shortlisted sounds. The group then discussed how different sounds and editing ideas might be extended or changed in order to build a longer radio piece. Apart from being cut and pasted together, and some volume boosting or reduction in places, these sounds are as they were heard on Wednesday 29th February, 2012. It is hoped they convey not only the essence of the works included, but also something of the experience of encounter; of the ear being led through a space in which the sounds of the world collide with the sounds of art.

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Valeria Merlini’s mix

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Felicity Ford’s mix