Carl Micheal von Hausswolff - freq_out 4
  Year :   2005
  Location :   Germany
  Worktype :   Exhibition/Performances
  Materials:   -
  Info :   sonambiente Festival, Berlin

  Work Details  
  The acoustical interplay between sound and space is more than a physical fact. As the legacy of sound art demonstrates, such interplay is rich in detail, laced with a potential to activate perception, redraw architectural borders, fashion forms of inhabitation out of the transient sparks of sonority, create new relations in and amongst the crowd. In this regard, “sound” and “space” are no longer separate entities or concepts, but a synthesized totality whose definition is specific to each location, each event, each instant of their interplay. A radical ecology, the sound-space interplay is an organism spawning dramas of perception and interaction, and what it means to be situated. Bringing together artists, composers, architects, producers, and musicians, the freq_out project is built upon such dramas, seeking to invade architecture with sonic imagination. Curated by Carl Michael von Hausswolff, a Swedish artist working for many years within the visual and sonic arts, freq_out over the last 3 years has appeared in Copenhagen, Oslo, Paris, and now Berlin. Structured as a collaborative sound environment in which authorship is determined by group effort, each of the thirteen participants is assigned an individual “zone” within the given space, determined by location or speaker position, and a specific range of frequency with which to produce a sound piece. Working in the space, discovering its features or exploring sonic material, sound pieces are developed through this social framework, according to intuitive notions of musicality, narrative, sonicity, structure, fantasy…: collaboration occurs as an embodied response to what already exists, either as spatial textures or the given currents of each of the participant’s work. That is, decisions, discussion, and arguments occur primarily through and by sound. As a final presentation each zone is equipped with its own loudspeaker system and CD player from which the individual pieces are amplified. Such a strategy offers an element of autonomy to each participant, while creating the possibility that any interference between works will only function to heighten the sonic experience. That is to say, the sound environment partially functions through interference by creating overlaps, overtones, intersections and deflections across the frequencies and between individual pieces, according to a visitor’s movements through the space, and the durational evolution of the sounds. While currents in sound art display often struggle to shield individual works from each other, to lessen the disturbance or interference between, freq_out intentionally seeks interference: it potentially suggests models for the presentation of sound art (and the construction of sound-spaces) based on incorporating the collective intermingling sound inevitably presents as opposed to ignoring or shutting it out. As Hausswolff proposes, freq_out is based on a notion of collectivity that doesn’t overshadow the individual. Thus, each participant is implicated into the greater whole, not so much through democratic imperative in which majority always rules, but through nurturing a field of cooperation. For each participant extends themselves beyond their individual practice as a way to meet the others in the space, and importantly through sound. The exhibition space not only functions as an architectural acoustical partner, but also as a meeting point for cooperation – in this sense, the sound-space interplay not only draws out other conditions for experiencing place, but also enmeshes individual perception within the folds of a greater event. For freq_out is plurality raised to the X-degree, splintering space, ricocheting through the mind, dislocating the individual body and planting new arrangements to the ecology of temporal experience. Though this is not to say that what results is pure utopia, in which each participant or sound is represented fully, for certainly in the resounding frequencies intermingling and intermeshing, beating against walls, surprising the ears from every perspective, any sense of musicality or cooperation may bleed into cacophony (as the disgruntled underbelly to any form of interaction). Maybe this in the end provides a way to think through what it means to cooperate collaboratively through sonic experimentation, to meet through sound — that the framework of this cultural action is just as much about conflict and the potential of noise, as it is about resolution. [Brandon LaBelle] with: Maia Urstad, Brandon LaBelle, Tommi Grönlund/Petteri Nisumem, Finnbogi Pétursson, Franz Pomassl, Benny Jonas Nilsen, Jacob Kirkegaard, Mike Harding, Kent Tankred, Jim G. Thirlwell, PerMagnus Lindborg, Jana Winderen; Kurator: Carl Michael von Hausswolff. Photo © P. Nisunen * Earlier sessions: Copenhagen – June 2003 (Disturbances Festival): Oslo – October 2004 (Ultima Festival): Paris – October 2005 (Nuit Blanche) Accessed 31.05.2007 from