Per Aspera Ad Astra, 2020
Performative, multi-channel soundscape composition recorded live at Fylkingen, Stockholm, 02.2020 with Katt Hernandez (violin)
Per Aspera Ad Astra is an ongoing artistic and media archaeological exploration of our persistent desire to connect with the extraterrestrial. It is a performative soundscape composition built successively of archival material and sounds characterizing technologies that were used in the past to establish contact with aliens and astronauts in space. The archival recordings include glitches from tape interviews with UFO witnesses from the Sweden's Archive for the Unexplained, snippets from the Voyager Golden Record, unknown radio signals received from distant territories beyond the Solar System, static and sonic artifacts extracted from conversations between the NASA space center and the crew of Apollo 13, and reenactments of historical messages sent by USSR and USA into space via early radio transmission technology. All this material is gradually intercepted and deconstructed by voice-synthesized remediations of Stanislaw Lem's deliberations on the inherently flawed idea of communicating with other-than-human residents of deep space and time.
Belle Isle / Quivering Stillness, 2019 (excerpt)
Soundscape composition (4-channel), premiered at Walking Festival of Sound, Newcastle, October 2019
Situated on James River in Richmond, Virginia, Belle Isle carries physical and sonic imprints of multiple activities performed here over centuries by human and other-than-human forces. Its curved rocks resulted from the clash of continents of Africa and North America 250 milion years ago. The island was used by Native Americans as their sacred zone and a base for fishing. It was witness to the arrival of African slaves 400 years ago. During the Civil War, the island was turned into a prison for the Union soldiers. In the 19th century, it was a site of mineral excavation, heavy land exploitation and industrial production including hydroelectric power. Today, the remnants of the infrastructure built by the slaves, neighbors rich wildlife which takes advantage of thick woods, ponds, and an abandoned quarry. The wildlife comprises water and airborne insects, birds, turtles, amphibians, dragon flies, fish, and reptiles.
Wheeled City / Inaudible Cities, 2019 (excerpt)
Soundscape composition (8-channel) premiered at Sound Diaries, Oxford & World Listening Day, Stockholm, July 2019
Inspired by Italo Calvino's Invisible Cities, Inaudible Cities is an exploration of the suburbs of Stockholm resulting in a series of short stories describing diverse facets of the city life from the perspective of its peripheries. As aesthetic and critical modes of engaging with the place I turn to listening and creative audio-visual field recording techniques. The interest in urban peripheries is followed by an interest in peripheral sonic situations in which mundane elements of natural and cultural realms, infrastructures, and debris become leading actors and storytellers. Wheeled City is a second chapter in a series of thirteen soundscape compositions based on sounds recorded in the vicinity of all end stations of the Stockholm subway system.
Les nuits electrique, 2018
Live-improvised soundtrack to an experimental movie by Eugene Deslaw from 1928
The soundtrack draws on field recordings made in various places during my artistic residency at Arc Art Residency in Romainmótier in Swizterland. The field recordings include, for example, sounds of music boxes and automated instruments recorded at CIMA in Ste Croix, electromangetic fields detected at the Bern train station, ATM machines in Romainmótier and vibrations of railway tracks in Vallorbe. The piece was live-performed for the Ciné-Club Croy curated by Miguel Mifune and Caroline Fournier at Arc Artist Residency, Romainmótier-Croy, Switzerland, November 2018.
Improvised soundscape composition commemorating the anniversary of the Warsaw uprising on August 1, 1944
Every year on the 1st of August at 5pm you can hear an array of air raid sirens sounding over Polish cities and towns. People drop all activities and stop for a minute to commemorate the so called W-hour, a code name for the beginning of the uprising against nazi occupants, in Warsaw 1944. There has been a range of politicized disputes regarding this historical decision to initiate the uprising against the facists occupants which, considering a very minimal chance for vicotry, put lives of thousands of young soldiers and civilians at risk. Recent Polish nationalistic movements and groups have seized and appropriated that historical moment using the underground army symbols to propagate their right wing agenda (while disregarding voices of the very few veterans who called to mind the uprising's principal aim to resist fascist ideology). This improvised composition is based on a one minute recording of sirens captured from my brother's car in Krakow, which he pulled up on August 1, 2015, at 5pm.
Memory Folds, 2017
Soundscape composition based on reel tapes found at my grandparents' place
The composition resulted from experiments with an old, dysfunctional Grunding tape recorder and a couple of tapes found at my granparents' home in a small village in southern Poland. One tape was of particular value: one side contains my grandma's catholic chants performed with a group of neighbours who used to gather regularly at her place to pray. On the other side of the same tape, one can hear my father's recordings of some unidentified rock n' roll band - music, which because of the communist regime at the time of his youth was very hard to get. On this tape, today almost completely obsolete, my grandma's dilligently maintained religious devotion co-exists with a rebelious spirit of my father, a young man seeking ways of escaping the communist opression such as through the music of the West.
Streetsampling Madrid, 2014
Semi-improvised soundscape composition based on field recordings of buskers in Madrid, March 2014
Streetsampling is one of my on-going para-archiving practices in which I document various facets of everyday life. Streetsampling is a documentation of buskers I have encountered in various places around the world. The project was presented at the international festival of sound art and interactive art In-Sonora VIII in Madrid, March 2014, in the form of a four channel, open-ended composition based on about 8000 samples extracted from 350 field recordings I had made in preceding 3.5 years. The exhibition was concluded with a performance taking the form of an 'aural dialog' between an algorithm, my live interaction with the field recordings of street musicians in Madrid, and an improvisatory response of Luca Brembilla, a street performer from Madrid who was invited to participate.
Hökarängen Project, 2013 (excerpt)
Semi-improvised soundscape composition based on field recordings and interviews from a neighbourhood in Stockholm
Hökarängen Project was a site-responsive archive sonically articulating diverse rhythms characterizing the Hökarängen neighbourhood in Stockholm. The audio archive was built of field recordings and interviews conducted during a period of seven days. It reflected ongoing processes characterizing the neighbourhood. The collection accommodated conflicting points, polzarized opinions and observations regarding the current gentrification as well as field recordings of the everyday life aura, the local atmosphere and its undercurrent human and other-than-human rhythms. After the period dedicated to building the substance of the archive, I concluded the process through a performative, semi-improvisatory live assemblage of its fragmentary content.
Dzielnica (the Quarter) 1941-1943, 2013 (excerpts)
Memorial soundwalk commemorating the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Jewish Ghetto in Krakow
On the 13th of March 1943, around eight thousand Jews were transported to the Plaszow concentration camp. Two thousands were killed on the streets of the ghetto. Every year, a memorial walk takes place following the last path of those sent to the camp. The narrative interweaves a number of fragmented memories, personal accounts, archival material, announcements, reviews and texts from the local Jewish newspaper as well as reconstructed soundscapes articulating, often indirectly, the reality of everyday life in the ghetto, also based on the accounts of survivors. As the listener moves succesively through five stations of the soundwalk, the silence gradually takes over sounds of communal activities. The last station of the walk takes the listener to the Plaszow camp where the only sounds one can hear are wind, raindrops and fragments a Jidish lullaby that the camp authorities cynically broadcast via a megaphone system when children were being taken away from their parents and deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp. Using transducer speakers I transmitted the recording of the lullaby via trunks and branches of the trees growing at the site of the camp, which I approached as some of the last remaining witnesses of this tragic history and its difficult soundscapes. Among others, the project was developed in collaboration with Katarzyna Zimmerer, a writer, and Agnieszka Reiner, a violin player and educator.
59.320244 18.071134 / Slussen Project, 2013
Soundscape composition based on field recordings from Slussen area in Stockholm
Slussen Project is an extensive audio database of stories, memories and field recordings characterizing the Slussen area in Stockholm and in particular its unknown and invisible dimensions. I have been recording Slussen since December 2012. It is when the process of demolishing began so that room could be created for the new design to be erected by the end of 2022. I focused on recording eight selected places in particular and used the recordings to compose eight soundscape pieces for an archival CD which was released in the spring 2013 alongside a group exhibition at Music Museum in Stockholm. Slussen Project was part of my Master Degree in Sound Art at Stockholm School of Dramatic Arts. This selected composition features resonances of metal pillars in the bus terminal that used to carry the enormous weight of subway tracks and platforms located right above them.
Last Walk of Olof Palme, 2011
Soundwalk composition to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Olof Palme's assassination
The Last Walk of Olof Palme was a commemorative soundwalk created to mark the 25th anniversary of the assassination of one of the leading political figures in the history of Sweden and Europe. The public was invited to take a part in a soundwalk which followed the exact path that Palme and his wife Elisabet took after leaving the cinema at Sveavägen on that day 25 years earlier. During the walk, the audience listened to a sonic composition, a vocal interpretation of the GPS data extracted from Palme's last walk.