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Hearing Place

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Hearing Place was a series of sound events that consisted of two exhibitions, an audiotheque and the launch of a specially curated CD. The events were produced to coincide with the World Forum for Acoustic Ecology Symposium held at the Victorian College of the Arts during March and were located at two venues: The Yarra Sculpture Gallery in Abbotsford and at the nearby VCA School of Art Student Galley.

Hearing Place was designed to showcase Australian sound art that interprets the acoustic domain, whether local, global or virtual. The events also provided an international context through the linkage to the Symposium and curated installations and audio works from over 13 countries. Hearing Place brought together professional sound practitioners from all areas including mixed media installation artists, sculptors, electro-acoustic composers, sound design companies and museum designers. The installations and audiotheque provided diverse listening environments where individuals and groups could appreciate time-dense art.

The seven works at the Yarra Sculpture Galley were curated as an entire polyphonic sound composition. Works of a high-tech and soft-spilling nature were confined to the end galleries and works under headphones responding to the natural world were at the centre. Some 140 people attended the opening. Annette Xiberras, representing the Kulin Nations, provided a welcome ceremony and John Crawford, head of ABC Classic FM, formerly opened the exhibition. Over the three weeks more 1200 people visited the space and visitors included international conference speakers from Japan, Austria, Spain, United States and Canada.

The works included: Tabula by Antonia Chaffey; The Sea Wailing by Cameron Robbins and John Turpie; Singing Bridges: World Symphony by Jodi Rose; Love is a Wonderful Thing by Gillian Chaplin and Les Gilbert; Losing Ground by Sue Kneebone; The Thought of Sound (2003) by David Waters; All Things are Passing by Paul Wood.

VCA Installations

Two further installations were at the VCA School of Art Student Gallery: Hildegard Westerkamp and Florence Debeugny's (Canada) At the Edge of Wilderness and Ros Bandt's Voicing the Murray. The works focussed on the sounds of endangered sites in British Columbia, Canada and the Murray River at Mildura respectively. They were arranged at either end of the central Audiotheque and the engaging touch screen installation designed by Gillian Chaplin and Les Gilbert, Iquitos Peru.


The Audiotheque brought together some 59 artists from 13 countries with sound works spanning classic electroacoustic and soundscape composition to pure unedited field recordings. Many of the works utilised 'binaural' recording techniques which when listened to with headphones, immerse the listener in a 3-Dimentional sound space. Over seven hours of audio were presented at a group listening station and at an individual station that allowed the listener to select each track. The Audiotheque was accompanied with projected texts on each work and biographies of each artist.

The artists were:

Aether, Roger Alsop, Ros Bandt, Daniel Blinkhorn, Matt Borghi, Brigid Burke, Warren Burt, Massimo Carlentini, Paul Carter, Boo Chapple, City Frequencies, Hannah Clemen, Ned Collette, Mike Cooper, Rodney Cooper, Viv Corringham, Chris Cree Brown, Christopher DeLaurenti, Elwyn Dennis, John Levack Drever, Jon Drummond, Steven Feld, Victoria Fenner, Daniel Goode, John Arthur Grant, Ben Harper, Lawrence Harvey, Greg Hooper, Mark Horrocks, Pete Kelly, Koura, Tim Kreger, Petri Kuljuntausta, Vineta Lagzdina, Steve Law, Charles MacInnes, Danny McCarthy, Mark McGuire, Gordon Monro, Iain Mott, Michelle Nagai, Samuel Pellman, Picture Projects, Mikhail Polichtchouk, Gabriele Proy, Giuseppe Rapisarda, Jodi Rose, Tahlee Rouillon, Scanner, Dallas Simpson, Eva Sjuve, SOSO, Pete Stollery, Pierre Thoma, Jake Tilson, Mario Valenti, Matt Warren, Aaron Ximm, Natalie Zimmerman.

Hearing Place CD

The CD Hearing Place was produced to showcase works from the Audiotheque. The CD was launched by Murray Schafer from Canada. Schafer is a key figure in the Acoustic Ecology movement and was keynote speaker in Melbourne for the Symposium. Ten works journey the acoustic environment and that of our internal response and provide unique insight to each locale.

The composers include:

Petri Kuljuntausta (Finland)
Samuel Pellman (USA)
Christopher DeLaurenti (USA)
Jon Drummond (Australia)
Aaron Ximm (USA)
Greg Hooper (Australia)
Viv Corringham (United Kingdom)
Pierre Thoma (Switzerland)
Gabriele Proy (Austria)
Michelle Nagai (USA)

The Hearing Place CD is available through Move Records http://www.move.com.au/disc.cfm/3275


Hearing Place brought together a wide cross section of the Australian and international sound community. The Australian Sound Design Project would like to thank the Australian Centre at the University of Melbourne, The Australia Council, the National arts funding and advisory body, the Australian Research Council, the City of Yarra, Su Baker and The VCA School Of Art, Martin Wright of Move Records, and the Contemporary Sculptors Association for together empowering this event.
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Audio CDs

  • Australian Sound Design Project (editors), Hearing Place: Sound Art Exploring Place from Around the World, Artists: Petri Kuljuntausta, Samual Pellman, Christopher DeLaurenti,Jon Drummond, Aaron Ximm,Greg Hooper, Viv Corringham,Pierre Thoma, Gabriele Proy and Michelle Nagai, Move Records, 2003. [ Details... ]

Prepared by: Iain Mott
Created: 6 August 2003
Modified: 29 August 2003

Published by The University of Melbourne
Comments, questions, corrections and additions: i.mott@unimelb.edu.au
Prepared by: Acknowledgements
Updated: 18 January 2007

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